Afforestation Programme

Part of Ministerial Statements – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 1:15 pm on 2nd March 2020.

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Photo of Paul Givan Paul Givan DUP 1:15 pm, 2nd March 2020

I welcome the Minister's statement and the announcements in it. It is vital that we enhance the natural habitat because of the benefits that that will bring to the environment and to people by getting them out of their workplaces, off their technological devices and embracing the natural habitat around them. The Minister's statement is very welcome.

I am surprised that the Minister did not mention Hillsborough forest park in his constituency when he named a number of others. I welcome the ongoing work at Hillsborough forest park. The community is looking forward to the improvements and the greater accessibility that they will provide. Will the Minister indicate whether he has any plans to widen community accessibility to Forest Service's assets so that, when it comes to the organisation of events, we maximise the number of people who can avail themselves of the facilities and reassure the community that Forest Service is not just about trees?