Policy paper

Forestry Commission Enforcement Policy

How the Forestry Commission uses its enforcement powers to protect England’s trees and woodlands.

Applies to England



These documents set out the Forestry Commission’s enforcement and sanctions policy and its application.

The Forestry Commission is the government regulator for forestry in England. This policy outlines our enforcement process and reflects the principles of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in their Defra enforcement policy statement.

Our policy document explains:

  • the results we want to achieve
  • the principles we uphold in relation to regulation and enforcement
  • the enforcement and sanction options available to us
  • how we make enforcement decisions
  • the enforcement framework and application

The guidance note details the legislation and offences that the Forestry Commission are responsible for enforcing. It outlines the tools and disposal options available to us and associated processes.

Published 11 July 2017
Last updated 17 January 2024 + show all updates
  1. Cross Compliance rules ended on 31 December 2023. Reference to cross compliance within the Enforcement Policy has now been removed.

  2. Updated the Enforcement Policy to reflect the new Forestry Commission Enforcement Team which brings enforcement action in-house. New supplementary guidance notes have been created and added to the page to support the policy.

  3. First published.