The Oak Tree project is a weekly nature based wellbeing group for people of all genders aged 18 and over who are struggling with their mental health and with isolation.

Throughout the programme participants will develop skills and confidence that will support their wellbeing and improve self-esteem. The programme is completely free to participants.

The Project

The Oak Tree Project was inspired by our women’s project and was co-designed with our Woodland Management volunteers. We wanted people who might not be able to join the Tuesday Management day due to the time commitment or the physical nature of the work to experience the beneficial impact of Tortworth Arboretum.

After a successful pilot project which ran from May 2022 to April 2023 we have now secured further funding to continue the project.

What to expect

Sessions run term time only on a Thursday from 11.00 am to 2.15 pm. 

We offer free transport from Kingswood and Yate as well as hot drinks and a healthy vegetarian meal cooked on the fire. 

We aim to provide a safe and supportive environment for participants to experience the mental health benefits of being active in the woods, learning new skills and connecting with nature and other people. 

Joining a group can be overwhelming. Here’s what one of the people attending the Oak Tree project manages their anxiety before coming to the group: 

When my anxiety is high before coming I remind myself it’s a safe place, with understanding people and that I can take myself out of an activity if it’s not right for me. I also find the grounding exercise helps to calm me and arrive at the woods. It’s also really nice to enjoy good food with good company.

Activities vary from walks around the arboretum to crafts with natural materials and cooking on the fire to learning about the ecology of the woods and the botanical tree collection we have. 

People who attend the project enjoy the connection with others and say that they can be themselves without fear of judgement. 

My favourite thing is enjoying the the woods and nature with a group where everyone is made welcome

‘I was nervous to start with, but the thing that helped is there is no judgement and is very chilled. ‘


We accept referrals from local organisations as well as self-referrals. For more information please email 

Please note the Oak Tree Project is currently full and we’re not taking referrals. Please keep an eye on our website and social media to find out when we have spaces. If your organisation would like to refer service users to our project please subscribe to our e-newsletter.