The magic and mystery of the woods and trees are embedded in our culture, from ancient folklore to modern literature. They offer us refuge, a place to play and a place to think. They are the generous providers of fuel, timber, energy and life. They let us dream of other ways of living. Yet we now face a future where taking a walk in the woods is consigned to the tales we tell our children. Threatened by development, neglect, climate chaos and ignorance, they are emptier – of flora and fauna, but also of people – than they have ever been.
Immersing himself in the beauty of Britain’s woodlands and the art and writing they have inspired, Peter Fiennes explores our long relationship with the woods and the sad and violent story of how so many have been lost. Just as we need them, our woods need us too. But who, if anyone, is looking out for them?