Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Standing Advice for Ancient Woodland and Veteran Trees

Natural England and the Forestry Commission have new planning advice on ancient woodland:
It provides advice which local planning authorities are advised to use in determining planning applications on or affecting ancient woodland and veteran trees. When consulted on proposals, Natural England and the Forestry Commission will refer planning authorities to this advice
Natural England uses the advice to remind us that:
Ancient woodland is an irreplaceable resource of great importance for its wildlife, soils, recreation, cultural value, history and the contribution it makes to our diverse landscapes. It is a scarce resource, covering only 3% of England’s land area. Veteran trees can be hundreds of years old, provide habitat for many different species and are a part of our landscape and cultural heritage. Local authorities have a vital role in ensuring the protection and conservation of ancient woodland and veteran trees, in particular through the planning system
Some of the effects on ancient woodland from development on adjacent land that must be considered:
Increased exposure to pollutants from the surrounding area
Increased deposition of dust, particularly from quarries, resulting in physical and/or chemical effects
Impacts on local hydrology through drainage or water table levels changing
Ancient woodland at Cadhay Bog near Ottery St Mary, where wetland habitat is threatened by quarrying