More hedgerows to be planted in Cheshire in 2008

Conservationists in Cheshire are working together to reverse the loss of hedgerows in the county.

The Cheshire Landscape Trust is supplying five members of the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) with a total of 2000 hedgerow plants to ‘gap up’ hedges in 2008. These members are five of nearly 300 who are part of BASC’s Green Shoots in Cheshire project.

This innovative project sees shoots across the county helping Cheshire to achieve the targets in its local biodiversity action plan (LBAP).

Since 1945 there has been large-scale loss of hedgerows throughout the UK. Many have been neglected, or removed altogether, in a drive for increased agricultural production after the Second World War. Cheshire County Council estimated that by 1992 it had lost two thirds of its hedgerows with the greatest loss occurring in areas of high quality agricultural land.

BASC’s Green Shoots project officer for Cheshire, Ben Gregory, said “This is yet another fantastic example of the shooting community working in partnership with other organisations to meeting targets set out by the UK government. It is very encouraging to see members taking action which will not only benefit game birds but many other important species of conservation interest”. 

NOTES TO EDITORS

• Green Shoots in Cheshire is a partnership project between BASC and the members of the Countdown Programme. It started in 2001 and has been so successful that BASC has replicated it in North Wales and the Somerset Levels, with other projects being developed in Northern Ireland and Dorset.

• BASC is a member of the Countdown Programme Steering Group and further enquires on the work that is taking place on hedgerows, grey partridge, dormouse, water vole, otter, white-letter hairstreak, dingy skipper and lesser silver water beetle under this project are welcomed.

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