Foresters’ Forest – Monitoring and Evaluation

Project Lead: Dr John Powell
Project Team: Chris Rayfield, Nick Lewis, Eleanor Hawketts, Katie Hickford, Dr Rob Berry.

In the autumn of 2014, the CCRI was successful in a bid to undertake a long-term evaluation of the Forest of Dean Landscape Partnership, a partnership led by the Forestry Commission to protect and enhance the natural, built and cultural heritage of the Forest of Dean within the ‘Hundred of St. Briavel’s’; a project now know as the Foresters’ Forest.

The purpose of the evaluation is to assess and demonstrate the effectiveness of the use of Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grants towards the Funds’ objectives.

The HLF objectives are that:

  • Heritage will be:
    • Better managed
    • In better condition
    • Identified/recorded
  • People will have:
    • Developed skills
    • Learnt about heritage
    • Volunteered time
  • Communities:
    • Environmental impacts will be reduced
    • More people and a wider range of people will have engaged with heritage
    • Local areas/communities will be better places to live, work or visit

The project commenced at the end of 2014 and will continue until April 2021.The project will take place in two phases:

  • A development phase which was completed in Autumn 2016, culminating with the submission by the partnership of a second stage proposal, and
  • A delivery phase lasting a further 5 years, following on from the successful evaluation of the stage 2 proposal

During the Development Phase, the CCRI team  designed an innovative evaluation methodology and tools with which to evaluate this complex and challenging programme of activity, whilst also providing an initial baseline from which change arising from the Landscape Partnerships projects can be measured.

During the Delivery Phase, the CCRI team will carry out a range of monitoring and evaluation techniques during each year of the project to identify change  towards the HLF objectives, and seek to explain its cause. From Autumn 2017 through to Spring 2018, the main focus of the monitoring and evaluation work will be to carry out interviews and surveys to establish a definitive baseline, whilst also providing support to project leaders from other delivery organisations to facilitate their efforts to collect monitoring data.

Further information about the Foresters’ Forest Heritage Lottery Funded Landscape Partnership can be found on the Foresters’ Forest website.