Category Archives: Ecology

Rural Diversification

The only certainty for farmers and landowners over the next few years is uncertainly.  For over 70 years individual farmers have benefited from price support and more recently from area payments for owning or farming land.  In leaving the EU it is likely that the Government will move towards a system of payments which require landowners for providing a range of public benefits based on ecosystem services.  Michael Gove has announced a pilot ELMS (Environmental Land Management Scheme) to start in 2021, with the intention of it becoming national and […]
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South Hooe: recreating wetlands and species rich grassland

South Hooe Peninsula, from the Cornwall bank

We have recently been working on a contract for a private client, funded through Natural England, undertaking a feasibility study into the restoration of species rich grassland and also freshwater wetland habitats.  The Tamar Valley AONB is helping facilitate the work and it also involves the Environment Agency.  Add in to the mix that the landowner is a former Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group advisor and you have a rather nice group of people […]
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Environmental consulting sector defies Brexit concerns

The latest market research report published by Environment Analyst (https://environment-analyst.com/) shows that the UK environmental consulting (EC) market grew by 5.1% during 2017 to reach a total turnover of £1.74bn.  Continued growth for the UK environment sector is expected to be around 4.8% for 2018 when all the figures become available.

Large infrastructure projects, increased public sector spend and streamlined management  structures are helping consultancies to achieve continued healthy growth, so there is no evidence of Brexit blues at the current time.

The Montgomery Canal: Restoring a Site of Special Scientific Interest

Current canal restoration, with newt exclusion fencing

This blog has some historical information, but please indulge me as I include some information from a previous job restoring the Montgomery Canal!  The canal is a SSSI for large sections of its length and also a SAC in Wales, primarily for rare aquatic plants, which happily co-existed with horse-drawn barges, but do not like modern propellers and silt disturbance.  Add in 127 listed structures, the 1986 Parliamentary Acct to restore the canal and many active restoration […]
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Job Opportunity: Landscape Architect

 

Leeds Castle gardens design (Land and Heritage)

What is a landscape architect? We are generally very familiar with ‘Architects’ designing built structures, and with engineers making them happen, but what about the open spaces surrounding and between structures? They rarely simply ‘happen’ and require a level of thought from the modest to the sublime. Many of us are familiar with garden designers and landscapers, backed up by a host of television coverage from quick fix gardens to the Chelsea flower show design sets, […]
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Land and Heritage Japanese Knotweed Management

Tied Up In Knots Over Knotweed?

 

Japanese Knotweed flowering (copyright GB non-Native Species Secretariat)

Japanese Knotweed has recently made national headlines, as Network Rail were found liable in the Court of Appeal, for damage from untreated Japanese Knotweed spreading into neighbouring gardens.  Japanese Knotweed is one of Britain’s most invasive plants and the prevention of its spread is a legal obligation for landowners under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. It is difficult and expensive to manage but non-intervention is not really an option. Early treatment of a new colony is quicker, […]
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Land and Heritage 25 year plan appraisal

The 25 year Environment Plan – Armageddon or Paradise?

An alarming warning comes from Spring Watch presenter Chris Packham this week (read it here), concerning the gulf between wildlife diversity in our nature reserves and that within the wider countryside.

All of this comes about from 70 years of agricultural intensification, urban sprawl and infrastructure expansion. Our network of Nature Reserves is piecemeal, widely scattered and has no strategic plan or design. All the studies of wildlife populations and distributions show that our current protection measures are simply inadequate. When […]
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