West Stormont Woodland Group

West Stormont
Woodland Group

Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) SC051682

Join us today to bring Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into community ownership

Learn about our 2023 revised CATS Application here.

The Community Asset Transfer Scheme (CATS) is run by Forest Enterprise Scotland and community organisations, such as ours, have a right to request the take over of publicly-owned land or buildings that they feel they can make better use of for local people.

We are really thrilled to let you know that, on 31st October 2023, Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) approved WSWG’s Revised Wildwood Proposal and Business Plan for Taymount Wood. This is the first big goal achieved in our Community Asset Transfer Process to bring Taymount and Five Mile Woods into community ownership!

CATS Application 2022 Proposal Summary

See our Window on the Woods. Building community wellbeing on a solid foundation of Ecofriendly woodland management.

This encompasses a wide range of activities which support both the woodland, the wider planet and the communities whose lives these outdoor spaces touch. We believe there can and should be a harmonious and mutually beneficial relationship between our communities and the land we share.

Everything that is proposed seeks an outcome that can not only bring measurable woodland environmental benefits into our locality, but most importantly deliver tangible opportunities for people to engage in, and gain, wellbeing benefits. Community Working Groups will be set up for each of the six ‘Window on the Woods’ themes.

Year Round Activities

These will be developed collaboratively by WSWG staff and ‘Window on the Woods’ Working Groups (comprising of members of the community), with the Groups’ own aspirations informing future fundraising for this core theme of WSWG’s work.

We propose to fundraise against the programmes developed by the Community Working Groups to give them dedicated budgets to work with. Imagine how many more individuals and groups in our community, from school groups to kids’ clubs, less mobile or socially isolated people to those without their own transport, enthusiastic young volunteers to active retirees, could benefit from joining in enjoyable and uplifting activities and events in a lovely woodland environment throughout the year.

West Stormont Woodland Group

Access Improvements

Proposal for Access Improvements in Taymount and Five Mile Woods to provide a more welcoming, accessible and inclusive experience for all. WSWG’s proposed MiDAS Community Transport Project will also help more people of all abilities and circumstances visit the woods and participate in WSWG events.

The path networks are currently variable in standard with no all-abilities surfaces, the parking is limited and there is little signage or information. And at present, there are no seats let alone picnic tables or shelters in either wood. WSWG therefore proposes to make the woods more welcoming and accessible to everyone and provide improved access, infrastructure and information to achieve this. You can see how this might look by checking out the Maps section below.

Taymount Wood

Five Mile Wood

Flagship Project - Taymount Wood

The Taymount Hub is a proposal for a localised development at the southern entrance to Taymount Wood which will provide a range of community, staff and project facilities.

Taymount Wood - Proposal
Taymount Wood - Proposal

Flagship Project - Five Mile Wood

“The Woodland Observatory Project” is not a building for looking at the stars! (Although it could include that if the local community wishes!).

The Woodland Observatory Project is a proposal for a long-term, learning-through-observation, educational project through which we can watch Five Mile Wood evolve over time, seeing how different parts of the wood grow, finding out what wildlife comes in at different stages, what effects different management activities bring for wildlife, learning how people and wildlife can best share the woods, monitoring the impacts of climate change, what food and other products our forests can provide, and whatever else we wish to find out.

West Stormont Woodland Group

Infrastructure and resources investment in this Flagship Project have been costed to include two Forest School Outdoor Classrooms, equipment, teaching and operational resources, plus an annual development budget.

It is envisaged that the Woodland Observatory Project and the Five Mile Wood Life-Long Learning Community Working Group and Year-Round Activities Programme Budgets will become integrated and work together.

The goal of this Flagship Project is that by coming to know Five Mile Wood inside out, our community will be best placed to love, protect and nurture this precious and historic wood long into the future.

Woodland Management and Nature Recovery

In the WSWG Community Consultation 2021, 95% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood should be managed for biodiversity and climate.

The Woodland Management Plans for each Wood, which will address the interlinked Ecological and Climate Emergencies from day one, set out how WSWG proposes to diversify woodland management with Nature Recovery as its primary outcome and also to produce income streams from the “Living Forest” as well as conventional timber extraction.

West Stormont Woodland Group

The WSWG Woodland Management Plans embrace a proactive approach placing Nature – “our life support system”— at the forefront of decision-making, ensuring meaningful community benefit, improved health and well-being in both a local and bigger picture sense.

The economic emphasis of forest products will be shifted from dependence solely upon conventional timber production to a diverse range of income streams and benefits from “Living Forest” enterprises, including Commercial and Community Food Forest areas.

This will also ensure the “old growth” – the oldest and largest trees – is protected and allowed to keep growing as nature intended.

In Taymount Wood, our emergency actions will include the establishment of critical Nature Recovery Zones with thousands of new native trees and other wildlife habitats, to create a Biodiversity Network across the woodland, thus ensuring future generations can still experience an intimate engagement with nature.

In Five Mile Wood, our emergency Nature Recovery Plan includes the rewilding of 60 hectares of previously felled woodland and increasing the biodiversity of the remaining woodland area.

Much more information on this topic can be found in our Documents folder – see the menu at the foot of this page. Look for the Taymount and Five Mile Wood Woodland Management Plans. You can also see how this might develop by checking out the Maps section below.


Governance is a general term which covers what WSWG will be, how it is run, and how it will work as an organisation.The following describes, in outline, how this will work.

You can find a copy of the WSWG Constitution in our Documents folder – see the menu at the foot of this page. 


Operations is a general term which covers how WSWG will actually run, where it will be based, the people it will employ, what they will do to achieve the results we want, and how it will work as an organisation. The following describes, in outline, how this will work.


We have costed all the elements of the WSWG proposal. Because of the scale of potential activity, we have presented the financial and funding information in four prioritised budget levels, ranging from the essential to aspirational. We have then mapped this information to potential funding sources. In outline, therefore, this is how we propose moving forward with managing the funding of the WSWG project.

Budget Level 1: Essential Operations

Budget Level 2: Progressive Operations I

Budget Level 3: Progressive Operations II

Budget Level 4: Aspirational Projects

To look more closely at the financial data around this please go to the Documents folder, see the menu at the foot of this page.

Maps - Features and Land Use - Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood

Click on a map to see it in full screen - scroll all maps

Once open, use the map legend (top right) to help you view the maps. Go fullscreen, zoom in, share to Social Media, download to your computer or close the map to return to this page.