You’ll find me in the forest…

IMG_5094ANDY WILSON founded Bristol Forest School in the Leigh Court Farm woodland in 2004. Trained with the original cohort of Forest School practitioners from Bridgwater College, he has a wealth of experience from over twelve years forest school teaching.

As Woodland Manager, Andy has successfully transformed the BFS site into a beautiful and accessible educational space. He monitors our ecological footprint and takes an environmentally sustainable attitude to our woodland, most recently expanding into a second site at Leigh Court. See Our Woodland for details.

Andy runs regular Forest School sessions and parties at both the BFS woodland and in schools throughout Bristol. He also runs Forest School staff training.


SOPHIE BUTLER joined Andy at Bristol Forest School six years ago. She is a trained Early Years teacher and qualified as a Level Three Forest School Leader in 2012.

Sophie’s passion for nature and sustainability has grown over the years since living off-grid in an eco village in Hawaii. She now works as both a forest school teacher and is responsible for BFS’s Marketing & Social Media.

Sophie established the BFS Pre-Schools: Forest Folk and Tiny Trees, as well as the Saturday Club Minis and Adventurers. She now supports the running of these groups while training other members of staff.

HANNAH BUSHELL joined the BFS staff team in 2015 following a dedicated volunteering stint. She is an Early Years/KS1 specialist, currently working as a part-time Year One teacher and recently gaining her Level Three Forest School award.

Hannah has worked with children around the world as an au pair in France, a creche leader in Spain, a TEFL teacher in South America and most recently spending many of her school holidays in Calais working to support the refugees in the Jungle.

Hannah currently co-runs our BFS Pre-School in both our Tiny Trees and Forest Folk groups, and is our new Saturday Club Minis leader.

TORI PURRETT is another volunteer-upgrade; originally studying Education at university and working in Steiner schools and with adults and children with learning difficulties, more recently Tori has been working as a Holistic Therapist alongside undertaking Forest School training and other courses that utilise nature to improve our health and well-being.

This year Tori is completing her Level Three Forest School while assisting Sophie and Hannah in the BFS Pre-School as well as in BFS Woodland Parties and other school sessions.

Tori’s most recent challenge is to master the art of long-bow making… Watch this space!

BFS additionally has a number of PART-TIME STAFF and VOLUNTEERS who assist in running our forest school sessions, planning activities and preparing resources. All staff who lead sessions alone, including our BFS Woodland Parties, are fully Forest School qualified, DBS checked, First Aid trained and they hold Public Liability Insurance. They include…

photo-14CRAIG BLACK had been volunteering with BFS for over two years in our monthly Saturday Clubs, before finally securing an official position.

Craig works as a Reception class teaching assistant while honing various outdoor skills in his spare time – most recently gaining his NPTC chainsawing qualification. He is also in the leadership team at Bristol Men in Early Years Network.

image1JAMES WOOD has over 16 years experience of working with and amongst the trees. From leading conservation groups to running his own tree surgery business, James particularly enjoys combining his love of woodlands and story telling.

James is finalising his Forest School Leader portfolio and he co-runs our adoptive holiday days.

image2RAHIMA FITZWILLIAM HALL qualified as a Forest School leader in 2014 after working on outdoor expeditions and adventure camps for children. She set up forest school programs in several primary schools in London before moving to Bristol.

Rahima co-runs our BFS Holiday Adventure Club and Saturday Tribe with Chloe.

Ruth Pearce Website Image (1)RUTH PEARCE qualified as a Level Three Forest School Leader in 2014, having previously worked with children in family support, play work and childcare. She enjoys basket making and also runs willow weaving workshops for both adults and children.

Ruth currently runs Bristol Forest School parties.

lucy-rose-harris-forest-pic-2LUCY ROSE HARRIS joined Bristol Forest School in 2017 and is a qualified primary school teacher with five years teaching experience.

Lucy gained her Forest School Level 3 Award in 2014 and is passionate about promoting outdoor learning opportunities, a love of nature and fun adventures for children. Lucy runs Bristol Forest School parties. To contact Lucy in reference to a party booking, her number is 07519 093 572.

SINEAD BROWNING is a mother of three, local childminder, trained Forest School Leader and a former maths and science teacher.

Sinead is also a keen gardener and a skilled craftsperson and can put her hand to all manner of natural materials from willow and wool, to felt and foraging – generously providing BFS with exciting natural resources.