Skip to main content
close x

Key To Map

Choose the categories you would like to display on the map.

Choose the categories to be display on the map

Join The New Forest Awakening Festival with more than 60 events about our nature and climate

Join The New Forest Awakening Festival with more than 60 events about our nature and climate


Forest organisations are inviting people to join in with the New Forest Awakening Festival which runs throughout March 2023.  

The Festival, run by the New Forest National Park Authority, is a collective response to the climate and nature emergencies in the New Forest and is now in its third year. 

Hundreds of people took part last year, while messages about the climate and nature emergencies reached more than a million people. 

For 2023 it’s back and bigger than before with even more events, talks, guides, initiatives and workshops showing what local organisations and community groups are doing to tackle the twin crises, and how we can all help.  

Many are in person, ranging from wildlife talks and walks to seed swaps, repair cafes, arts events, community drop-ins, offers and open days, with others available online. 

There will also be family-focused activities to find out about the New Forest’s rare habitats, and the chance to discover more about our wonderful local New Forest Marque producers. 

The New Forest is a very special place. More than 50% is of international importance for nature, and many areas have the highest possible conservation status. 

It has the largest area of lowland heath in Western Europe, shaped by the free-roaming animals owned by commoners. Commoning is the traditional system of land management with rights attached to land and properties allowing people to turn out ponies, cattle, sheep and pigs onto the open Forest. 

The rare heathland and wetland habitats in the New Forest are havens for wildlife, some of which are declining in other parts of the UK. Ground-nesting birds such as the curlew, Dartford warbler and mystical nightjar can all be found in the New Forest. 

All six species of the UK’s native reptiles live here too, as well as 63% of Britain’s 24,000 types of insects, 75% of all dragonfly species and over 2,700 types of fungi. 

The climate emergency is putting these fragile landscapes and habitats under threat, with hotter, drier summers and warmer, wetter winters changing nature’s balance. The global crisis for nature is mainly due to land management practices, pollution and urban expansion. It is being worsened by a changing climate that is driving changes in the numbers and distribution of our wildlife species.  

Prof. Gavin Parker, Chair of the New Forest National Park Authority, said: ‘Land in the National Park is essential to mitigate climate change; sequestering and storing carbon, supporting wildlife, providing clean water and preventing flooding.  

‘We can all take action immediately. Taking a few steps, no matter how small, can all add up to making a positive impact on our fragile New Forest environment.’  

Join the hundreds of other people who have taken the New Forest Climate and Nature Challenge pledge today at 

Photo by Nick Lucas

Newsletter Image





Six free walking routes when you sign up for New Forest Newsletter

Subscribe to New Forest National Park Authority

By entering your email below you are consenting to us sending you newsletters. To unsubscribe, email More info:

I think you mistyped your email
Your interests (tick at least one)

Please select one

By signing up to this form you are consenting to receive emails from us. Each email will contain a link to your personal reference settings where you can opt-out or change which emails you receive from us. Please read our Privacy Policy for more information about how we use data.

Subscribe to New Forest National Park Authority

Thanks, your subscription has been confirmed. You've been added to our list and your New Forest walking pack is on its way to you, including a link to download our free app.