Thetford Forest, the largest area of pine woodland in lowland England is one of the most striking and distinctive of East Anglia’s landscapes. Yet it is also the most recently created, for the Forestry Commission only began planting here in 1922. Using the evidence of maps and documents, and the reminiscences of former Forestry Commission workers, this book explains why the forest is here, and how it came to look the way it does.

The book discusses the old Breckland landscape of great estates, heathland and rabbit warrens, before describing how the land for the forest was acquired, how the trees were planted, and how they were managed and protected. It shows how the landscape which we see today has been shaped by a a complex, ever-changing constellation of social, economic and environmental forces.