Our response to the coronavirus pandemic

Last updated 11 October 

Visiting our woodlands and nature reserves

Our woodlands and nature reserves are open.

Face coverings will remain a legal requirement indoors at our visitor centres.

When visiting our woodlands and nature reserves, remember to follow the Welsh Government guidance to help keep Wales safe and:

  • plan ahead
  • keep your distance
  • park responsibly
  • be patient and respectful
  • follow the Countryside Code

Check the web page for the woodland or reserve before you visit.

Changes to how we’re working

Most of our staff continue to work from home. We continue to visit sites to collect data during significant environmental incidents and respond to issues of the highest environmental and public risk.

Environmental regulations

We expect businesses and individuals to continue to comply with environmental regulations and their permit conditions.

If a regulated business or individual is facing problems complying with their permit conditions as a direct result of the exceptional circumstances we currently face, then they should:

  • inform us of the issues and how they are being managed as early as possible
  • prioritise compliance with those permit conditions that directly protect the environment
  • take all practicable alternative measures to prevent and minimise any harm to the environment or risks to public health
  • keep clear and comprehensive records of the decision made and actions taken

If regulated business and individuals follow these guidelines we will take a proportionate and reasonable approach to how we assess compliance at this time.

We will continue to check and assess compliance in a number of ways including phone calls, focused visits to priority sites and using a range of alternative methods for gathering intelligence.

Regulatory decisions

We have published the following temporary regulatory decisions to help deal with issues arising:

Events on our land 

Some organisations host events at our sites. Please contact the event organiser directly if you would like to know if there are changes to an event you are attending.

Plan an event, activity or project on our land

Guidance for land and site managers

See guidance for managers of natural and outdoor cultural sites to operate sites as safely as possible.

Our forestry operations

We're continuing with our harvesting operations to assist the supply of wood products.

All of our forestry sites are operating within current Government guidelines on coronavirus and social distancing measures.

Felling licence applications and Environment Impact Screening

We are processing felling licence applications and Environment Impact Screening Requests as normal. We aim to complete these in the standard timescales. If there are delays with your application, we will keep you informed and may request additional time to make our determination.

We will follow government guidance when carrying out site visits. We would not normally expect to meet site managers, but we will contact you in advance to ensure we can conduct it safely.

Our licensing staff are working from home and can be contacted via email on fellinglicence@cyfoethnaturiolcymru.gov.uk

Development Planning Advice Service

  • We are still processing planning consultations but we may take longer to provide advice and may exceed our normal published service standards.
  • We have re-commenced the delivery of our normal Discretionary Planning Advice where resources allow and there is no risk of adverse effect on our ability to deliver our statutory service.
  • Our availability to undertake a site visit will be determined on a case by case basis and subject to an adequate risk-assessment. Requests for site-visits should be submitted by email.
  • Our staff are still working from home. Please submit any query or consultations via email and not by post or telephone.

More information about planning and development.

For projects in Pembrokeshire, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, Carmarthenshire, Swansea, Neath Port Talbot and Bridgend please email swplanning@cyfoethnaturiolcymru.gov.uk.

For projects in Cardiff, Newport, Vale of Glamorgan, Rhondda Cynon Tâf, Torfaen, Monmouthshire, Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil please email southeastplanning@cyfoethnaturiolcymru.gov.uk.

For projects in Gwynedd, Anglesey, Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Wrexham, Snowdonia National Park please email northplanning@cyfoethnaturiolcymru.gov.uk.

For projects in Powys, Ceredigion, Brecon Beacons National Park please email MidPlanning@cyfoethnaturiolcymru.gov.uk

Analytical services

Ongoing events have significantly impacted our staffing levels within our analytical services teams. We are making every effort to meet our analytical commitments, but these may be affected at this time.

Given the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions and our need to prioritise internal NRW analysis, we have taken the difficult decision to not provide commercial services.

We appreciate that this may cause you disruption. We apologise and thank you for your ongoing patience and understanding in these difficult times.

If you have concerns then please email our analytical services. Our usual response times could be impacted by current events.

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