AUGUST 2022 UPDATE
During June and July the Herefordshire Meadows team have collectively surveyed 30 species rich grassland sites, the majority of which will be put forward by their owners for selection as new Local Wildlife Sites as part of the Herefordshire Wildlife Trust’s Wilder Herefordshire Project.
Our seed harvesting team have also been very busy over the past few weeks collecting wonderful native seed from 9 different sites to be used to create new areas of species rich grassland across the county as part of our 2022 Botanica project. The seed is sieved after harvesting and dried in preparation for broadcasting in late summer/ early autumn.
We’ve been carrying out Natural Capital mapping on landholdings within the Wye Valley AONB as part of the Floodplain Meadows Project we are working on with the Wye & Usk Foundation (see below for more details of how to get involved with this). We also had a lot of fun hosting a film crew from WWF-UK for a week as they captured material from across the county for the grassland component of their upcoming UK nature conservation series. More on this in the coming months and a very big thank you to all the contributors for giving their time so generously.
Herefordshire Meadows, now a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO), is continuing to grow with more enquiries and project opportunities than ever before. We are very grateful to Natural England for the support and funding we’ve enjoyed since 2016 as a Countryside Stewardship Facilitation Fund group. As members we hope that this transition looks and feels seamless to you all. We will be continuing with a programme of events, training, knowledge exchange and projects. We will be launching our membership offer later this summer / autumn. Meanwhile we are celebrating 6 years of Herefordshire Meadows with the next in our Mitigating Climate Change series with a visit to a farm where wildflower meadows, trees and Stewardship are working together for one of our members.
Save the Date
Thursday 15th September afternoon walk at Brilley. – Celebrating flower rich grassland: pass successes and future opportunities.
Hosted at Fernhall Farm courtesy of Nick and Nicci Lloyd. A chance to celebrate some of the many successes of the past six years and look forward and discuss some of the opportunities on the horizon. Guest speaker, Dan Carne of the Woodmeadow Trust will talk about mosaic grassland systems and how new funding options may be able to support the establishment and management of these habitats. This will be followed by a farm walk where there will be a chance to discuss how the theory converts to implementation on the ground with input from Natural England and National Trust advisers. Booking details to follow shortly.
Save the Date
Wednesday 28th September Woolhope Dome Workshop – Developing Natural Capital and agri-environment schemes in the Woolhope Dome: discover how farm businesses and small holdings can benefit from landscape scale environmental projects in a high input cost and high food price scenario
We will be hosting an evening workshop at Woolhope Village Hall on Wednesday 28th September in conjunction with the Wye Valley AONB and supported by the Woolhope Dome Environment Trust. This will offer the opportunity for landowners within the Woolhope Dome to come together and discuss their needs and aspirations and hear how current and new opportunities can support landscape scale environmental projects. Guest speakers will include Billy Lewis of Boycefield farm and recent winner of the Farm Carbon Toolkit’s Mixed Soil Farmer of the year award. Booking details to follow shortly.
Bumblebee ID Training led by Dr Richard Comont
On Tuesday 14th June we hosted a bumblebee ID training day at Adhisthana. A short write up of the event can be found on our website along with a link to lots of helpful resources so that you can also have a go at monitoring bumblebees.
National Meadows Day at Olchon Court Farm
On Saturday 2nd July we organised a farm walk at Olchon Court to celebrate National Meadows Day. During this, we discussed the management approach that has created such wonderful, diverse meadows in a mosaic with trees, woodland, pond, riverbank and orchard. A full write up of the event can be found on our website here. A big thank you to Miriam Griffiths and Anthony Furness for hosting such a fantastic day.
Grass ID Training day led by Stuart Hedley
On Monday 4th July we hosted a Grass ID training day at Parsonage Farm. The focus was on grasses of Herefordshire farmland. A write up of the event can be found on our website here along with some links to useful resources.
New Future Farming Leaflets
In July DEFRA published the Payments for Farmers booklet which contains details of new funding opportunities and Payments for Farmers leaflet which provides an overview of these new funding opportunities. Click on the links for more details.
Herefordshire Meadows core member Billy Lewis wins the Soil Farmer of the Year Competition
Congratulations to Billy Lewis who farms at Boycefield Farm in North West Herefordshire and who has won the Farm Carbon Toolkit’s Mixed Soil Farmer of the year award. The Farm Carbon Toolkit will be holding a farm walk event at Boycefield on Friday 14th October which will provide the opportunity to see what it is that Billy is doing that has merited this prestigious award. Booking details can be found here.
Floodplain Meadows Project
We are working in partnership with the Wye & Usk Foundation, supported by the Wye Valley AONB to do opportunity mapping of potential floodplain meadow restoration in the River Wye flood plain. If you own land within the River Wye floodplain between Mordiford and Goodrich and would like to be provided with a free Natural Capital map of your landholding and support to apply for grant funds to carry out floodplain meadow restoration work contact either Caroline Hanks (email@example.com) or Rory Johnson (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information.
New Team Member:
We are delighted to announce that Charlotte Vincent has recently come onboard to help support our 1:1 advisory service, Priority Habitat Surveying and other project work. Having worked for Natural England and also with the Wyre Forest and Malvern Hills AONB facilitation groups, Charlotte brings a wealth of experience with her of stewardship schemes, habitat management, botanical surveying and more.
Herefordshire Meadows Team
Herefordshire Meadows is registered in England and Wales as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration no. 1198105