Forest Friendly Farming

Matthew Chatfield
Latest posts by Matthew Chatfield (see all)

The Ranger was delighted to discover, just over the water in Hampshire, an initiative in the New Forest called Forest Friendly Farming. What a great idea – and a good website too. The Ranger is always happy to see the internet being used well for conservation, and this is a good example. It also seems to have resulted in some good on-the-ground improvements in habitat and species, with a dedicated advisor actually going round and helping landowners and farmers to farm in a more sustainable way. It’s come at just the right time when the new HLS seems to be on it’s way. There does seem to have been a genuine shift, in smaller farmers at least, away from production farming and more into land stewardship. What’s more, at least one farmer known to the Ranger is happy to embrace his new life as a nature reserve steward, given the rather poor alternative which commercial farming has turned out to be recently. Perhaps there’s a modest light at the end of the tunnel for farmers. Certainly there seems to be in the New Forest.

Matthew Chatfield

Uncooperative crusty. Unofficial Isle of Wight cultural ambassador. Conservation, countryside and the environment, with extra stuff about spiders.

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