As part of our longterm personal project to further increase biodiversity at Swangleys, we have been working this year to qualify to enter Natural England’s Mid Tier Countryside Stewardship scheme. We have now been confirmed as successful and will start to put into place the first elements of an agreed programme.
So, over the next few months you might notice hedge and tree planting on the farm along with its associated protective fencing, preparation of wild flower seed beds and a number of other initiatives. As part of this, we will be planting or in-filling more than a kilometre of native species hedging. This work forms part of a longer term aim to take an active role in the UK’s forthcoming Environmental Land Management Scheme, once its details are released by Defra.
On a related theme, Knebworth’s resident ecologist and photographer, Matt Livesey, has been documenting wildlife on the farm since 2018 and in the wider area for far longer. Matt’s latest shot on the farm is these native grey partridges, photographed last month at Swangleys. You can see more of Matt’s work, and order prints, at https://www.mattliveseyphotography.com/