In June, we launched a consultation on hedgerow protections in England.
Hedgerows are a vital feature of the English countryside. Among their many benefits, they create habitats, support crop pollinators and store carbon.
We want to preserve the hedges we have, invest in their maintenance and support further planting.
Since the consultation opened, around 2,000 of you have shared your views.
With 2 weeks to go before the consultation closes, I wanted to remind you that there’s still time for you to help shape future regulations so that they work for wildlife, the environment and farmers.
We want your views on maintaining and improving current hedgerow management rules, our approach to enforcing these, and what future hedgerow policy could look like.
Currently, farmers must not remove important hedgerows, must not cut or trim hedgerows during bird nesting and rearing season, and must maintain a buffer strip along their hedgerows.
We’re seeking feedback on our proposal to replicate the following measures in domestic law:
- To have a ‘buffer strip’ 2 metres from the centre of a hedgerow to protect its structure
- To not cut hedgerows during bird nesting season to protect important bird species
We’d also like your opinion on a proposal to introduce civil sanctions (non-criminal penalties and notices) for enforcing these measures.
Everything is set out in the consultation, linked at the very end of this post.
The consultation closes on 20 September.
We want everyone who cares about hedgerows to respond: from farmers and stakeholder organisations, to members of the public.
Please note that blog comments aren’t recorded in the official consultation, so please make sure to contribute using the link below.