In March we are reminded about the importance of small things, as St David suggested!

Rhaid i ni wneud y pethau bychain!

There was exciting news at the Wales RDP 2014-2020 Consultation Event last week. The RDP, or Rural Development Plan makes clear how European funding is to be used to support and improve the rural economy, particularly agriculture, forestry and the like. It seems that Alun Davies, our Natural Resources Minister, really does understand the potentially huge benefits of small areas of woodland, trees and hedgerows within the farmed landscape. Hence after concerted lobbying over the past months by Coed Cadw (Woodland Trust Wales) and Coed Cymru, Bill MacDonald (Land Use and Sustainable Forest Management Advisor to Welsh Government) was able to explain that the proposed new Glastir Small Grants Scheme includes options for small scale tree planting, so an opportunity is on the horizon for all landowners to try out the type of planting which has served the Pontbren farmers and their environment and community so well.

Access to expert advice and support is really important in creating areas of new woodland on farms

Access to expert advice and support is really important in creating areas of new woodland on farms

Subject to further discussions with EU about their definition of woodland; options for tree planting support in Wales will include shelter belts, field boundaries, field corners and scattered individual trees. Multiple applications will be welcomed so that landowners can start small but experiment further as their confidence grows. The scheme will be linked to advice on agroforestry and the benefits of tree planting; key to its success will be well rounded facilitation, which identifies tree planting opportunities with ready access to specialist advisers and support with delivery.

We hope that this big step on the part of Welsh Government will lead to many small, positive steps across the Welsh landscape that will not only be of benefit to farm businesses but also to important challenges such as meeting EU Water Framework Directives, reducing flooding, reducing our carbon footprint and helping other species adapt to climate change as we do so ourselves.

So to Welsh Government we would like to say congratulations and thank you for listening to us – llongyfarchiadau a diolch am wrando arnon ni!

Rory Francis, Communications Officer, Coed Cadw

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About Kaye Brennan

Senior Campaigner (Policy & Advocacy) for the Woodland Trust and Administrator, 'Woodland Matters' blog
This entry was posted in Agriculture, Campaigning, Conservation, Wales, Woodland creation and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to In March we are reminded about the importance of small things, as St David suggested!

  1. June McCarthy says:

    Our woodlands, especially long established and ancient are so very precious.

    Bye the way I have just seen a really atmospheric woodland night video to a song on youtube- see Talk Talk – “Life is what you make it.” Love the piano notes as centipede’s legs filmed in motion! Lots of woodland creatures filmed. Good music video to engage the young. Perhaps Woodland Matters ought to approach this band with a view to engaging their public support and promotion to raise the profile of our endangered ancient woodlands amongst young people???.

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  3. Derek West says:

    Jim the Labour Goverment in Wales may be more progessive than Englands Tories(it would be hard for them not to be),but here in Norfolk the Labour controlled Norwich City Council,ducks the issue of tree planting in the City and drives Green party members on the council mad with frustration.

  4. matt derrington says:

    I like the sound of this St. David guy. Perhaps more fitting that Britain’s smallest city is named after him. 1 eye on the biggest picture possible, and another looking after the small things. I’m guessing he may have realised that if both ends of the spectrum are respected, all the things in between will be ok.

    And if you care about the bugs that keep your soil healthy and give you better food, making you happier and more effective, you don’t leave them to die out in rye grass deserts. Every hedgerow and solitary tree makes things better. Enough small plantings eventually add up to true vibrancy and goodness for all. From bugs, to us, to ‘God’. Which are all the same anyway it seems, so why would you do anything other than care for them all?

  5. Peter Kyte says:

    Let us hope that the London government follows Wale’s example.

    • Jim Clark says:

      Peter not very much chance of that. Wales has a Labour Government, they are interested in all people not just the super rich. A couple interesting facts are that the Gwent Levels did not suffer the flooding that the Somerset Levels suffer across the water but similar. It has been stated that trees in the area helped. In Wales we plant trees, in England the Government listens to ignorance, being ignorant themselves and drege. We don’t kill Badgers here either, in Wales the more enlightened government listened to the evidence and not ignorance and chose a more effective. way of combatting BTB. It is unlikely you will hear much about this nor other positive things that are happening in Labour Wales as the Tory government and their supporters in the press and media don’t want you to hear them

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