*The Pendle Hill Farmer Network has now finished, but you may be interested in joining the Forest of Bowland Farmer Group
The Pendle Hill Farmers Network aims to:
- Increase understanding of local Countryside Stewardship priorities and knowledge of landscape scale conservation techniques, and to encourage the uptake of schemes
- Work together with as many group members as possible implementing these techniques on, and across, members' farms by:
i) Restoring, managing and expanding priority habitats: woodlands, grasslands, wetlands and moorlands
ii) Restoring traditional boundaries
iii) Implementing natural flood management techniques
iv) Working to understand and improve soil health for plant growth, biodiversity and carbon storage
Our regular newsletters provide up to date information with the groups activities as well as general farming information. You can read our past newsletters here-
You can also view our annual reports here -
Upcoming Events 2022
Our final meeting will be held -
Wednesday 16th March 2022 - 7pm
Please join us for a power-point presentation and discussion with NFU North West Regional Director, David Hall . This will be followed by supper, and then a short talk with Sarah Robinson who will reflect on the project and its achievements, The White Bull, Gisburn
Hotpot, Red Cabbage & Salad will be served for supper - please let us know if you have any dietary requirements.
Please let us know by Friday 11th March if you would like to attend, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or via the WhatsApp group
What's a Hill Worth? Research Project
Natural Capital Solutions (http://www.naturalcapitalsolutions.co.uk/ ) have now published their final report looking into the concept of paying Public Money for Public Goods: Plugging the income gap: Assessing environmental options for upland farms: A case study in Pendle Hill
Produced by Dr Alison Holt of NCS and Prof Joe Morris, the report attempts to answer two questions:
(i) What public benefits can upland hill farms provide under the proposed Environmental Land Management (ELM)?
(ii) Can the financial rewards for delivering these benefits, via the implementation of ELM-type options, make up for the loss of the Basic Payment Scheme?
Pendle Traditional Boundaries Project
The Traditional Boundaries project is aiming to-
- Restore 5000m of hedges and 1000m of walling across the Pendle Hill Landscape Partnership area
- Run walling and hedging competitions in the area
- Teach beginners and DSWA Level 1 walling courses
- Teach hedging courses
- Provide volunteering opportunities for people to practice their skills.
The boundaries we are working on so far have all been on Network members' farms, and we want to continue this.
Whilst we are quite close to achieving our restoration targets, we will be looking for additional lengths for the 2021-22 season. Please get in touch if you have not yet had any works done on your farm and we can come and take a look.
You can find out more about the project here.
Pendle Meadows Project
The Pendle Meadows project is aiming to increase the biodiversity value of hay meadows within the Pendle Hill Landscape Partnership area.
So far we have nine meadows in the project, six of which are on members farms. These meadows have been surveyed this summer and will be receiving seed mixes for broadcast sowing during September 2020.
Each meadow will receive an individually tailored mix, based on its location, site conditions, management and the plants it already contains.
From then on we ask that the meadows are managed without artificial fertiliser and are cut for hay after the middle of July.
As well as increasing their value for biodiversity, we are hopeful that having species rich meadows on farms in the area will help to secure environmental land management payments in the future.
We are looking for more meadows to add to the project, so to find out more you can take a look here or give Sarah a call.
Natural Flood Management Measures
Natural Flood Management aims to reduce the downstream maximum height of a flood, (the flood peak), or delay the the arrival time of the flood peak downstream, giving more time to prepare. This is achieved by restricting the progress of water through a catchment – also known as 'slowing the flow' through a range of techniques. This handbook (link below), produced with help and support from the Ribble Rivers Trust and the Yorkshire Dales National Park, sets out what each of these techniques involves, the additional biodiversity and agricultural benefits it holds and where to find help and guidance for installation.
Farming in Protected Landscapes in the Forest of Bowland
Information on The Farming in Protected Landscapes programme has been released and full details can be found here
The programme will run from 2021 to 2024, and proposals are invited from 1st July 2021. The funding is for one-off projects and is not an agri-environment scheme. Receiving funding from this programme will not prevent farmers or land managers from participating in the emerging Environmental Land Management Schemes, and projects on land within existing stewardship agreements can be funded provided they are additional to the current agreement.
Forest of Bowland Farmer Group
Now that the Pendle Hill Farmer Network has come to a close, The Forest of Bowland AONB have established a new Forest of Bowland Farmer Group - details of which can be found here.