Pre-visit information for outdoor events

Current Government guidance will permit outdoor groups of up to 30 from 17 May until 20 June, after which further relaxation of the rules may be announced. This page will be updated as and when any new guidance comes into force.

COVID-19 safety measures

Please do not attend an RFS event if:

  • you or any member of your household has any of the following symptoms – cough, fever, respiratory difficulties, loss of taste or smell.
  • you or any member of your household are self-isolating or in quarantine, or if you or a household member has been in direct contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 or who is currently self-isolating.

Each Division is implementing tailored measures for their individual meetings if they are able to go ahead, but please be aware of the following general guidelines:

  • Members must register to attend beforehand and should not arrive unannounced on the day.
  • Numbers will be limited and booking will be on a first come, first served basis.
  • Car sharing must be avoided unless the passenger is part of your household.
  • Where possible caps should be paid by online banking transfer to keep cash handling to a minimum.
  • Badges will not be issued, and a register will be taken by roll call rather than signing in.
  • Members must adhere to the hand sanitisation and boot spraying procedures implemented by the Division.
  • Members should take care to observe social distancing for the comfort and safety of all.
  • Refreshments cannot be provided.  You are encouraged to bring your own water, hot drink flasks and packed lunch/snacks as necessary.  Please do not share and please take any rubbish home with you.

This list is not exhaustive so please take care to read any guidance issued by your local Division, and if in any doubt, contact your local Honorary Secretary, or


As an educational charity, the RFS must lead by example on the biosecurity measures recommended by the Forestry Commission (FC) and Defra to minimise the risk of spreading soil-borne tree infections. You can make a difference to stopping the spread of tree diseases. Clean boots are a first step!

For further information, please see the following Forestry Commission biosecurity guidance:


Ticks and Lyme disease

Populations of ticks carrying Borrelia are distributed widely throughout the UK. Late spring, early summer and autumn are peak feeding times for ticks. A lower level of feeding activity takes place in other seasons. Therefore, the risk to humans is potentially year-round. View our fact sheet and other information on Lyme Disease here.



RFS meetings take place out in the woods in all weathers:

  • Appropriate footwear and clothing should be worn.
  • Please be aware of your health and safety at all times.
  • Do not take risks that could put you or others in danger.
  • Do not attempt to do anything that you do not feel confident about.
  • Please follow instructions.

The RFS is a member of the Forest Industry Safety Accord.