- Local people and relevant organisations and interest groups shall be identified and made aware that:
- New or revised management planning documentation, as specified under section 2.1.1, is being produced
- A new or revised FC or DARD scheme application and associated documents are available for inspection
- High impact operations are planned
- The woodland is being evaluated for certification.
- The owner/manager shall ensure that there is full co-operation with FC or DARD consultation processes. The owner/manager shall consult adequately with local people and relevant organisations.
- The owner/manager shall respond to issues raised or requests for ongoing dialogue and engagement and shall demonstrate how the results of the consultation including community and social impacts have been incorporated into management planning and operations.
At least 30 days shall be allowed for people to respond to notices, letters or meetings before certification.
Means of verification
- Consultation with FC or DARD
- Evidence that users of the woodland are informed about high impact operations (e.g. signs, letters or other appropriate means).
- A list of interested parties
- Established means of pro-active communication.
The owner should be able to justify the frequency and level of consultation and the certification body will look for corroborating evidence.
Examples of methods for identifying and making local people and relevant organisations aware include:
- Statutory consultations by the FC or DARD or voluntary consultation with relevant bodies
- Letters to individuals or groups
- Temporary or permanent signs in or near the affected woodland
- Information in local newspapers or other publications
- Notification to curators of archaeology
- Other appropriate methods.
The certification body is also obliged to consult with relevant stakeholders and may be able to supply a list of those to consult, or work with the owner/manager on a co-ordinated approach to consultation.