The New Forest National Park Authority welcomes discussions with any farmer, commoner or landowner who would like to talk about applications for projects which fall under the four themes of the Farming in Protected Landscapes programme.
Here are some examples of projects the programme might support:
- Restoration of native hedgerows, planting of hedgerow trees and in-field trees, and associated fencing
- Creation of wildlife ponds/scrapes
- Riverbank restorations and other interventions that improve water quality and biodiversity of rivers and streams
- Creation, restoration and enhancement of grasslands, including by introducing native perennial wildflower seeds where appropriate, scrub management, introduction of grazing
- Removal of non-native invasive species, for example rhododendron, Himalayan balsam.
- Training and/or equipment/infrastructure to change practices that boost soil carbon on arable land, for example:
- Reduced tillage or no tillage: methods of tillage or ploughing where disturbance to soil is minimised
- Integration of crop residues to soil (letting the crop decompose back into the soil)
- Cover or catch crops
- Intercropping (the cultivation of two or more crops simultaneously on the same field)
- Crop rotations
- Addition of manure or other organic matter
- Training and/or equipment/infrastructure to change practices that boost soil carbon on agricultural grassland (modified/improved land as opposed to semi-natural grassland):
- Improved grazing patterns – changes to the timing and intensity of grazing
- Fertilisation using manure
- Sowing legumes
- Sowing deep-rooted grasses
- Peat restoration – for example raising the water table by blocking drainage channels
- Planting trees on farmland – with the aim of increasing tree cover while, at the same time, maintaining agricultural production
- On arable land, it involves increasing woody vegetation along field margins.
- In pastures, trees can be more readily planted on fields and at higher densities.
- Educational walks and talks on private land
- Footpath or bridleway diversions and improvements for example, replacing a stile with a gate on a public right of way or fencing a field boundary to link up with other access routes
- Renewing an access point to CROW access land
- Interpretation panels/other means of public engagement at appropriate locations, e.g. farm shops, private campsites, footpaths
- Restoration of heritage assets, for example buildings, barrows, boundary banks
- Eyesore removal, for example farm plastics, building materials, metals
- Capital works on commoners’ holdings which will support a sustainable and environmentally friendly approach to commoning. This could include changes to the yard to adapt to drought and flood conditions and improve water quality in nearby watercourses, for example rainwater harvesting infrastructure and manure stores.
- A facilitator/convenor of a group or network of farmers and landowners who want to work collaboratively at a landscape scale.
- Activities which assist in preparing the holding for future Environmental Land Management Schemes and/or potential new approaches to the farm business. This could include items such as training, wildlife surveys/natural capital audits, carbon audits, heritage assets, farm business advice.
- Desk based assessments/feasibility studies/advice to inform topics such as archaeology, commoning, nature recovery, carbon capture, farm business