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Saturday, 20 August 2016

Conservation grants give national park's landscape a competitive hedge

The North York Moors national park is offering land manager grants of up to £2,000 for hedgerow planting and drystone walling.

The Traditional Boundary Scheme, now in its fourth year, has grant-aided nearly 10,000 square metres of drystone walls and planted over 8km of hedges in the area.

The national park authority says traditional boundaries form an important part of the landscape and it wants to help landowners improve, protect and restore these features, including coppicing and gapping up.

As well as serving as stock-proof boundaries, drystone walls and hedges provide shelter for stock, reduce soil erosion and increase habitat connectivity.

The authority's conservation projects assistant Roy McGhie said: “It has been fantastic to see the difference the traditional boundary scheme grant can make to the landscape of the national park.

"As well as being important historical features, field boundaries are of considerable wildlife value and also add to the aesthetic appeal of the park. This grant is an important contribution to the way the authority recognises the significance of traditional boundaries to farming, wildlife, and the park in general.”

The initiative grant-aids traditional field boundaries in the park providing they do not already receive funding from other sources. Priority is given to those boundaries which are most visible from a public right of way or of particular historical or environmental interest.

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