Search is on to find sites to help boost native woodlands

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LANDOWNERS are being asked to come forward with sites to boost native woodlands across the Yorkshire Dales after a major financial boost has been secured to finance the two-year scheme.

The Clapham-based charity, the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT), has been awarded £120,000 for woodland restoration from the SITA Trust, an independent ethical funder dedicated to making improvements to the natural environment and community life.

The YDMT is now looking for suitable sites and has urged landowners to come forward with potential locations for planting programmes involving a mixture of native broadleaf species. Depending on each potential site, a grant of up to 100 per cent of the cost of creating the new woodland could be available to landowners.

The YDMT’s woodland development officer, Chris Lodge, said: “We’re appealing to farmers and landowners with any possible sites for planting to come forward. Planting trees is a vital long term investment in the environment, and together, thanks to this significant grant awarded by SITA Trust, we really will be able to make a huge difference to the future of the Yorkshire Dales landscape.”

Only around 2.5 per cent of the Yorkshire Dales National Park is covered with native broadleaf trees compared with the national average of 4.8 per cent. Plans are under way to almost double the broadleaf cover in the National Park to more than 12,350 acres by 2020. Anyone interested in taking part in the woodland programme can contact Mr Lodge on 015242 51002 or via email chris.lodge@ydmt.org.