LNP Forum progress


Matt Whitney







The purpose of this paper is to provide LNP Board members with an update on planning of the LNP Forum event on October 12.




The Board is asked to:



-       Note the format of the day

-       Approve the Primer, which will be sent out to all attendees prior to the event

-       Agree to release £2,500 funding to Wild Oxfordshire for their preparatory work in setting up the Forum and this event.




LNP Forum


The LNP Forum was initially conceived as:


a broad stakeholder group that will ensure the decisions of the board and actions of the LNP are fully informed by the views and experiences of LNP members. (Source - Wild Oxfordshire website)


The purpose of this first event is to:


-       Foster a feeling of togetherness under the LNP banner

-       Provide an opportunity for partners to get to know the LNP Board members

-       Provide the Board with a mandate for their focus on three priority theme areas (Natural Capital Investment, Local Nature Recovery Strategy, People and Nature)

-       Gather suggestions for objectives for each of the priority areas


The event is being facilitated by the LNP Manager and expert facilitator Pete Cranston. The agenda is as follows:


10:00               Welcome and Introduction                                          Richard Benwell

10:10               Board member introductions                                      LNP Board members

10:20               Icebreaking getting to know each other                     Pete Cranston, All

10:35               Keynote – setting Oxon in national context                Alan Law Natural England

10:55               Outline of Agenda                                                       Matt Whitney


11:05               COFFEE        


11:30               Group work 1                                                              Facilitators, all

12:15               Group work 2                                                              Facilitators, all


13:00               LUNCH


13:45               Group work 3 (outside if weather allows)                   Facilitators, all

14:30               Walkabout to review group outputs (flipcharts)          All

14:50               Board reactions, participant reactions/questions        Board Members, all

15:15               Wrap up, outline next steps                                        Richard Benwell


15:30               CLOSE



Board Member introductions


Towards the top of the agenda is a slot for LNP Board members to introduce themselves. We have only allowed 60 seconds for this, as time is tight, so please keep this introduction to within one minute each.




For the group work sessions, attendees will be split into nine groups. Each group will focus on each of the three LNP priority areas (Local Nature Recovery Strategy, Natural Capital Investment, People and Nature) over the three sessions. Therefore we

have nine facilitators, three for each of the topics.


Wild Oxfordshire hosting Forum


The LNP Working Group proposed that Wild Oxfordshire host the LNP Forum. The Forum at that stage (before the LNP was formed) was envisaged to be a small-ish group (circa 40 people) of the key stakeholders who could represent their sectors and provide technical and strategic advice to the LNP Board. It was envisaged that this would include many of the members of the existing Biodiversity Advisory Group (which includes nature conservation charities, local authorities, Defra bodies and the AONBs), with the addition of new members from other sectors (health, farmers, landowners, business, academia). Draft Forum Terms of Reference were produced. Wild Oxfordshire submitted a draft budget of £9.5k per annum for hosting the Forum which included two events per year.


Due to the need to move ahead with planning for the first forum event, Wild Oxfordshire proceeded with preparatory work, prior to a Manager (or Chair) being in post. Wild Oxfordshire’s Nature Recovery Lead (Mike Pollard) who is a contractor for Wild Oxfordshire at a cost of £300 per day, plus the Chief Executive (Camilla Burrow) spent time liaising with the Board and proto-manager Matthew Stanton, advertising for and recruiting an independent facilitator (who we persuaded to offer their time pro bono), seeking and securing an inspiring venue (at a highly reduced rate), drawing up and managing the invitation list (using our extensive knowledge and contacts within many sectors), and planning the day with the facilitator and the new LNP Manager (Matt Whitney) once they were in post. Once Wild Oxfordshire were made aware that there wasn’t a budget for our continued involvement, they handed over to Matt Whitney.


Wild Oxfordshire’s Chief Exec has spent 5 days (£350/day) and the Nature Recovery Lead has spent 2.5 days (£300/day) on this, which equates to £2,500. Both will be attending on the day to help with facilitation, which is not included in this figure, and are happy to provide as their ‘in kind’ contribution.


Whilst understanding that the proposal for Wild Oxfordshire to host the Forum was not formally ratified by the Board prior to work commencing, Wild Oxfordshire would be grateful if the LNP would consider reimbursing Wild Oxfordshire for this work.




In advance of the event, all those who have registered to attend will be sent a Primer paper, to ensure at least a minimum level of shared understanding prior to attendance. This is included as an Appendix to this Paper. The Board is asked to approve this primer.


Appendix 1


Oxfordshire Local Nature Partnership Forum event – a primer

Thank you for confirming your attendance at Oxfordshire’s Local Nature Partnership Forum event on October 12th 2022 at Kirtlington Manor. The purpose of this letter is to ensure shared level of understanding amongst attendees prior to arrival, and to prepare you for some elements of the day.

Oxon LNP Structure

The purpose of the LNP is to radically enhance nature, its positive impact on our climate and the priority it is given, helping to make Oxfordshire a county where people and nature thrive. The Partnership is structured with a Board (membership of which is representative of the diverse stakeholder groups in the natural environment sector in Oxfordshire), a Forum (open to all who work in the environmental, agricultural, business and health sectors) and working / task & finish groups which come together to focus on particular issues and topics. The Forum is

“a broad stakeholder group that will ensure the decisions of the board and actions of the LNP are fully informed by the views and experiences of LNP members.

About the day

This first Forum event on 12 October doubles up as a launch for the LNP. It's a chance for partners, Board members, and the LNP Manager to get to know one another.

This is also a key opportunity for you to help shape the direction, priorities and objectives of the partnership, through a series of interactive breakout groups. We will look at activity already going on in the proposed priority areas (landscape), where we want to get to (objectives), and how we are going to get there (roadmap). We hope this event will result in some suggested objectives within these three priority areas, which can then be considered by the appropriate sub-group.

We’re delighted that we will be joined by Alan Law, Deputy Chief Executive of Natural England, as keynote speaker. Alan will speak about the critical role of Local Nature Partnerships, Local Nature Recovery Plans and other new policy initiatives in achieving the environmental objectives laid out in the 25 Year Environment Plan and Environment Act 2021.

Weather permitting, we hope to spend some of the day outside. Please bring appropriate clothing for this (we won’t be going on a hike, more likely sitting under trees…


Whilst Kirtlington Manor is not the most obvious location from a sustainable transport perspective, there are a number of potential public transport options.

-       The number 250 bus leaves Magdalen Street in Oxford at 9am, dropping you in the village of Kirtlington, approximately 15 minutes' walk from the venue, at 9.28.

-       The number 250 bus leaves Bicester Village Railway Station at 08:50, dropping you in the village of Kirtlington, approximately 15 minutes' walk from the venue, at 09:24. 

-       Bicester Village Railway Station is the most direct rail station. From here it is possible to catch the 250 bus service above or find a taxi service.

We appreciate that driving may be the only option for some. Parking spaces are limited to 50, with 100 attendees, so liftsharing will be strongly encouraged.


A vegetarian finger buffet lunch will be provided, with gluten free and vegan options available. Tea and coffee will also be provided. Please bring refillable water bottles and reusable coffee cups if you can.

If you would like to bring a FREE STANDING banner advertising your organisation or project, please arrive early – there will be an area in which these can be displayed.