Charity hits out at farming reforms

Northumberland Wildlife Trust has criticised the Government, claiming that nature is being ‘pushed to the precipice on farms’.

Following last year’s decisions about the Common Agricultural Policy, Environment Minister Owen Paterson has announced how the Government will implement key aspects of farming reforms.

The Trust says the Government has failed to grasp this opportunity to save precious and declining wildflower grasslands and to ensure that new ecological focus areas will benefit nature.

Duncan Hutt, head of land management at the Trust, said: “It is extraordinary that the Government has decided against protecting wildlife-rich grasslands in England – it has decided against a no-plough rule for these most precious places.

“Our species-rich grasslands are in steep decline and need all the help they can get.”