Watch out Welsh Hedgerows, Long Forest is coming…. Print
Thursday, 28 September 2017 10:17

The Long Forest project is now underway after its official launch at the National Botanic Gardens of Wales on Wednesday (27 September). Keep Wales Tidy in partnership with the Woodland Trust, welcomed many like minded organisations to celebrate the start of an exciting three-year project.

The Long Forest Project has been developed by Keep Wales Tidy in partnership with the Woodland Trust, with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation. Together, they’ll be delivering practical action – recruiting thousands of volunteers to plant 100,000 trees and improve around 120,000m of hedgerow.

 


The Long Forest Project is all about making Welsh hedgerows important again. It aims to raise awareness on the importance of hedgerows and their uses, highlight their historical value and survey their condition. The project is delivering practical action across Wales working with landowners and community groups to help manage, improve and extend hedgerows, through training and volunteering action. The project also plans to develop a hedgerow surveying app which will create records which will highlight the current state of the hedgerows across Wales.

Richard Bellamy, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Wales said:
“When people think of what ‘heritage’ means, they often think of grand old buildings like castles and rolling estates. But Wales is lucky enough to also encompass some beautiful landscapes and natural environments that are home to rare and precious species. By funding natural heritage projects like the Long Forest, we hope more people will realise that looking after our landscape – perhaps starting in our very own back gardens – is just as important.”

Lesley Jones, Chief Executive for Keep Wales Tidy
“Hedgerows in Wales have been an important make up of our landscape for centuries. However, they are an undervalued resource at severe risk from neglect, damage and removal – and it is now vital that action is taken. We are excited to be working with the Woodland Trust and volunteers across Wales to ensure our hedgerows are maintained and respected for future generations.”

If you are a volunteer or land owner who would like to get involved with the long Forest Project, visit www.keepwalestidy.cymru/longforest for more information and how to get involved.

Source: Keep Wales Tidy

How Long Forest applies to Holt

Holt Town Trust have a major involvement with the Long Forest Project at Commonwood, just outside the village.

The land which comprises 64 fields surrounded by approximately 22 kilometers of hedging has been in existence since the 1890's. There has been deterioration of some hedges over time and at one period, a culture of enlarging fields by removing hedges. Significant gaps have also appeared.

This project enables the Trust, with the action from Keep Wales Tidy and it's partners, to re-establish these by planting 525m of mixed species (hawthorn, blackthorn, field maple, holly, guelder rose, dog rose, buckthorn) which has the result of restoring 3.3 kilometers of our hedges. Funding has been provided through the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation. As well as working to preserve this unique environment the hedges will benefit the tenants, improve the diversity of wildlife and environment and should provide opportunities for local people to learn new skills and get involved with our community.

More news about the project and planting days will be announced within the next few months.

Bob Campbell