The Wildlife Trusts have announced the restoration of two temperate rainforests in Wales and on the Isle of Man, marking the beginning of a broader initiative to revive this rare habitat across the British Isles.

Temperate rainforests, also known as Atlantic or Celtic rainforests, thrive in areas exposed to the sea with high rainfall, humidity, and minimal temperature variation. This globally rare habitat is considered more endangered than tropical rainforests.

In Creg y Cowin on the Isle of Man, over 28 hectares (70 acres) will be afforested with native tree species, while 8 hectares will be allowed to regenerate naturally. The Manx Wildlife Trust will also manage non-planted areas like lowland heath, fen-meadow, waxcap grassland, and ponds to create a mosaic of habitats for wildlife. Conservation grazing will be employed in certain areas to ensure habitat diversity. The organisation hopes that species like the wood warbler, pied flycatcher, redstart, raptors, owls, and woodland invertebrates will return to the region.

This initiative in Creg y Cowin also aims to benefit the local community by enhancing water purity for the West Baldwin reservoir, aiding in flood prevention, and contributing to a nature recovery network on the Isle of Man.

In Bryn Ifan, Gwynedd, the North Wales Wildlife Trust will plant 40 hectares of rainforest on Bwlch Mawr, the mountain overlooking Bryn Ifan. Native planting and natural regeneration will be employed to boost the temperate rainforest. While some areas will be dedicated to nature-friendly farming, conservationists will also improve nearby wetlands to support the marsh fritillary butterfly. Tree species such as oak, birch, and alder will be introduced, and conservation grazing will be utilised for management.

These restoration projects signify a crucial step in the recovery of temperate rainforests in the British Isles, which have dwindled to just 1% of the country’s land area due to centuries of agriculture and development. The Wildlife Trusts’ efforts will help reintroduce lush vegetation and rare plant, lichen, and fungal species to these habitats, fostering biodiversity and conservation.

Guy Shrubsole, environmental campaigner and author of The Lost Rainforests of Britain, said: “There’s real momentum now to restore and expand our amazing temperate rainforests, and it’s brilliant to see the Wildlife Trusts advancing their plans.

“But this should also be a kick in the pants to the UK government. If ministers want to see more farmers and landowners follow the Wildlife Trusts’ example in restoring rainforest and other vital habitats, they need to unlock funding, support the removal of invasive rhododendron, and publish a rainforests strategy for the country.”

Rob Stoneman, director of landscape recovery at the Wildlife Trusts, added: “We’re delighted these first rainforest restoration projects can now get started. They’ll provide vital habitat for wildlife in a time of nature crisis, store vast amounts of carbon, and benefit local communities for generations to come. Restoring this gorgeous habitat will also allow adaptation to climate change, reduce threats from extreme heat, flood and drought, and enable local people to reap the benefits.”



At Natural World Fund, we are passionate about stopping the decline in our wildlife.

The declines in our wildlife is shocking and frightening. Without much more support, many of the animals we know and love will continue in their declines towards extinction.

When you help to restore a patch of degraded land through rewilding to forests, meadows, or wetlands, you have a massive impact on the biodiversity at a local level. You give animals a home and food that they otherwise would not have had, and it has a positive snowball effect for the food chain.

We are convinced that this is much better for the UK than growing lots of fast-growing coniferous trees, solely to remove carbon, that don’t actually help our animals to thrive.

This is why we stand for restoring nature in the UK through responsible rewilding. For us, it is the right thing to do. Let’s do what’s right for nature!

Support our work today at and join in the solution!


Leave A Comment