Herefordshire meadows potentially at risk from tree planting

Many people are taking positive action to responding to the climate emergency by planting trees.

Our wildflower grassland is a precious resource that is still decreasing nationally.

Herefordshire Meadows members are rising to the challenge of creating and restoring native wildflower grassland across the County (summary of 2019 meadow making pilot ) and we’re keen to ensure existing meadows are not lost to tree planting.   Wildflower meadows and pastures, wetlands, scrub, and many other habitats are already storing carbon in significant amounts in addition to their benefits for wildlife, pollinators and more.They are also a valuable seed supply for meadow making in Herefordshire.

We are encouraging everyone to think about planting the RIGHT TREE IN THE RIGHT PLACE avoiding designated sites and existing wildlife habitat on the farm.  Remember that your permanent grassland may also have below ground archaeological features.

You may need a derogation from Natural England / RPA if you are considering planting into any land in stewardship grassland options.  Depending on tree planting density and fencing you put up to protect trees from livestock you should check how your BPS might be be affected (please see page 25) and you will need to ensure the areas in your scheme claim match those of your BPS.

If you would like help deciding where to plant on your land we can put you in touch with local advisers who can visit.  If you want to find out about historic woodland sites and other historical features please download David Lovelace’s guide to researching the History of your farm

Contact Caroline Hanks or Sue Holland with any queries.