Forestry grant scheme: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Information requested

I would like to know what records are kept on the forestry grant scheme, broken down by which grant/species is being planted. For the purposes of this request I am interested only in the grant for new woodland not existing woods. There are nine different grant support schemes, depending on which species are planted or where they are planted, so I would like to know how much money has been granted and or the hectares planted in the following categories:

  1. Conifer 
  2. Diverse conifer 
  3. Broadleaves 
  4. Native Scots pine 
  5. Native upland birch 
  6. Native Broadleaves 
  7. Native Low density 
  8. Small or farm density 
  9. Northern & Western Isles

I would also like to request records on which area the grants have been made in, namely:

  1. Highland and Islands 
  2. Grampian 
  3. Perth & Argyll 
  4. Central Scotland 
  5. South Scotland

Lastly I would like to request what percentage of applications are refused, broken down by the 9 categories listed above.

As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.


Amounts granted / hectarage planted by grant category and area

Scottish Forestry collates and publishes woodland creation and restoration data on a monthly basis. Updated figures are published at At time of writing, the most recent publication is the November 2022 update, which can be found here:

Data on the amounts granted (Value) and hectarage (Area) of FGS grants offered for the 9 woodland creation options since the commencement of the current iteration of the Forestry Grant Scheme in 2015 is shown in Table 3, and the regional split is shown in Table 4. Annual breakdowns for applications submitted, approved, and claimed against are available in subsequent tables.

Percentage of applications refused by grant category

The percentage of applications assessed as ineligible or rejected since the commencement of the current iteration of the Forestry Grant Scheme in 2015 is as follows:

Woodland Creation Option

% of applications assessed as ineligible or rejected



Diverse Conifer




Native Scots Pine


Native Upland Birch


Native Broadleaves


Native Low Density


Small or Farm Woodlands


Native Woodlands – Native Broadleaves in Northern & Western Isles


Please note: reportable “Rejected” and “Ineligible” figures are recorded at the final case assessment stage. Woodland creation is an iterative process: proposals that do not meet the scheme criteria may be withdrawn or abandoned by the applicant at an earlier stage, and we do not routinely monitor numbers of applications withdrawn in this manner.

Additionally, official statistics on woodland creation on both public and private land across the UK, including previous years, are published by Forest Research and available here

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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