More than 20 woods at risk of being built on - The Stratford Observer
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9th Aug, 2022

More than 20 woods at risk of being built on

SOME of Warwickshire’s oldest residents are in need of help.

The Woodland Trust has launched its ‘save our ancients’ campaign in a bid to protect Warwickshire’s trees and woodlands from housing developments.

The trust has recorded over 800 ancient trees and 21 woods in Warwickshire it says are at threat.

The campaign follows government proposals in the recent housing white paper, currently open to public consultation, to add ancient woodland to the list of policies restricting development in England.

While the current policy prohibits developments that impact ancient woodland, a loophole makes exceptions where ‘benefits outweigh the loss’ -putting over 700 UK ancient woods at risk. In contrast, loss of built heritage must be ‘wholly exceptional.’

Campaign leader Kaye Brennan said: “Our ancient woods and trees are increasingly recognised as ‘natural heritage’ and they should enjoy at least the same level of protection as built heritage. They are an intrinsic part of Warwickshire’s fabric but they are being failed by current planning policy.

“While this loophole exists they are so vulnerable, but we have an excellent opportunity to change their fate – we need the public to help us make this happen.”

Visit woodlandtrust.org.uk/actnow to support the charity’s campaign before consultation closes on May 2.

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