Woodland Trust doubles Yorkshire Dales land ownership

Snaizeholme.

The Woodland Trust has doubled the land it owns at Snaizeholme, near Hawes.

The charity says the purchase is part of a plan to create a “mosaic of habitats allowing nature recovery and help combat the effects of climate change”.

The new piece of land wraps around the head and the western flanks of the valley, including two areas of limestone pavement and the peat moorland of Grove Head.

Last year, the charity raised £3 million to buy up 550 acres of land in the area.

It says it now needs a further £7 million to transform this extra piece of land which will bring its ownership to a total of 561.5 ha (just under 1400 acres) that will be managed by the Woodland Trust.

Al Nash, the Woodland Trust’s estate manager for the north, said increasing its ownership would help the fight against climate change, as well as the biodiversity crisis.

He said: “Snaizeholme is an incredibly unique opportunity for the Woodland Trust.

“Hundreds of years ago there would have been trees across the site but now there is just a handful.

“Creating more woodland is hugely important, but it is so much more beyond.

“The vision is to create a vibrant mosaic of native woodland, with extensive habitat restoration across peat moorland, acid grassland, limestone pavement and riverside meadows.

“It will become a Yorkshire beacon for the bid to tackling climate change.”

Aims of the Woodland Trust at Snaizesholme:

– Tree planting: Trees will boost the red squirrels’ habitat through buffering existing woodland improving the water quality of the river and beck, safeguarding the resident otters, plus birds such as herons, grey wagtails, kingfishers and dippers. This is a rare opportunity to create a sizeable wildlife haven for the north of England

– There are over 250 acres of upland peatbog, crucial carbon sinks – the Trust will look to restore them

-Maintaining, repairing and increasing dry stone walls to retain the traditional look of the area

– Have a site free of all plastic tree protection. The Woodland Trust vowed to cease the use of any new plastic tree protection at its sites by the end of 2021

– Slowing the flow: With 21 streams running down into Snaizeholme Beck, there is a huge amount of work needed to slow the headlong rush of water during heavy rains. In combination with the plans for peatland restoration. leaky dams may well be one of the ways to slow water flow and trap sediment, while letting fish and crayfish safely slip through.

For more information visit https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/support-us/give/appeals/snaizeholme/