Cattle graze sites for first time in 30 years

Contact Us

Website design and hosting by Commatic

Cotswold Blog

The Cotswold Blog is a collection of diary entries, news, gossip and other Cotswold related information.

Cattle graze sites for first time in 30 years

This year sees the culmination of a grazing project run by the Cotswolds Conservation Board and Natural England that will encourage wildflower grassland sites in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) to flourish.

Three important lowland limestone grassland sites in the Painswick area are now being managed so that they can support a range of rare plants, butterflies and other invertebrates.

Grassland sites containing rare species are managed landscapes and can only thrive if scrub is kept at bay through grazing.

The project encourages farmers at Juniper Hill SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), Cud Hill and Huddinknoll Hill Commons to graze their cattle on the land so that grass and scrubland is kept short enough for rare wild flower species to flourish.

Cattle grids, water supplies and fencing have been installed and Welsh Black cattle from the National Trust Grazing Animals Project are carrying out the first phase of restoration grazing on Juniper Hill. Local farmers have offered to graze all of the sites in the future.

Paul Hackman who is Natural England's Cotswolds representative said: "After more than 30 years of neglect, Natural England is delighted that livestock are once more grazing Juniper Hill. The Common has become choked with coarse grasses and scrub encroachment but grazing is the key to restoring the grassland and the diverse fauna and flora that rely on it."

Huddinknoll Hill near Painswick is an area of limestone grassland last grazed by the Burcombe family in the 1920's. Now Geoff Burcombe, the latest generation to run the family farm, has agreed to put some of his beef herd to graze on the land once again.

He said: "I remember as a boy seeing butterflies and flowers on Huddinknoll Hill but there are none now. I am pleased to be taking part in the grassland grazing scheme because we want to do our bit and help bring these species back to the Cotswolds."

Members of the public will now be able to enjoy the open nature of the grassland sites and the spectacular views of the Painswick Valley.

Posted : 26/02/2007 22:40:02

Other recent Cotswolds news items

Scout Group set to benefit from council grant

Plans for the interior fit out of a Scout Group hut in Chipping Norton have been given an 18,000 funding boost from West Oxfordshire District Council. The new fit out is for a brand new hut to be... [more]

Woodstock's outdoor heated pool reopens for summer on Saturday 22

Woodstock's outdoor heated swimming pool reopens for summer on Saturday 22 April. With a 25 metre main pool and a depth of 3.5 metres, it is ideal for diving enthusiasts and there is a separate pa... [more]

Youth club to build new home after major grant funding

Members of a youth club are celebrating after councillors agreed a 50,000 grant to help build their new purpose-built home. The Woodstock Youth Centre will now press ahead with its plans to const... [more]

To view the full Cotswold Blog, click here