The Countryside Stewardship Facilitation Fund is a landowner led group that works across property boundaries to the benefit of wildlife and the environment, which, of course, recognise no such boundaries. The Malvern Hills AONB is co-ordinating this group and invites inquiries from landowners who might like to join in; please contact Paul Esrich on 01905 845 057 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are 98 such groups around the country, covering 450,000 ha, and to find out more, please visit the Government’s web page on the Facilitation Fund
First Event on Tree Health
On the 21st November 2018 we held out first training session at Barton Court. We heard from Forestry Commission experts, Forestry Consultants and Natural England about some of the worrying symptoms and innovative therapies that are going on in the locale.
Second Event on Boar and Deer
On the 20th February 2019, Eastnor Castle Estate kindly hosted a training session on the management of boar and deer. The group saw the captive herd of red deer in the park, and then repaired to the house to hear about deer management from Graham Rimmington of the Deer Initiative, and John Dutton from Worcester University whose speciality was boar.
Third Event on Land Management and the Future
On the 2nd of July 2019, Dr Greenall of Bromesberrow Estate gave a wide-ranging talk on the future of agriculture and food production in the UK. A tour of the Estate followed to see how words were put into practice.
Fourth Event on Nature’s Networks
On the 10th December 2019, Herefordshire Wildlife Trust explain the mapping work that had been done for the Group. It highlighted where and what improvements to the connectivity could simply be made.
Fifth Event on Sustainable Farming
On the 9th September 2020, Rob Havard from the Croome Estate, and Rich Thomas from Risbury Court, talked about how they managed their ground, and its livestock, in way that profited Nature and their farms.
Sixth Event of Managing Woodland for Conservation and Shooting
On the 1st December 2020, an online talk was give by the Game and Wildlife Conservancy Trust and Herefordshire Nature Trust that told of how the management of woodlands for shooting and conservation were by no means incompatible; a few minor adjustments harmonised the dual use.
The scheme is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and is part of the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE).
The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development : Europe investing in rural areas. This project has received European Union funding under the Countryside Stewardship Scheme’s Facilitation Fund.