1.8 hectares of new woodland will make our district green. Please tell me this is someone’s idea of a joke.
Central government has recently earmarked up to 885,000 acres (that’s an area significantly larger than Greater Manchester) of greenfield land for additional housing, a large proportion of which will inevitably include hedgerows and trees.
I have little idea of how much of that land-grab will fall within Lincolnshire but I lay odds it will be thousands of times more than the paltry amount eligible for the Lincolnshire County Council’s woodland and hedgerow planting grants.
Re-establishing our hedgerows and woodland is important and should be taken seriously, but we continue to see local government approving housing developments that pay little credence.
A current example is the building of 360 new houses on farmland (isn’t that green too?) in Sleaford.
That one development will consume five times the space supported by this grant and yet plans show just token tree planting and hedgerows that span less than a quarter of the proposed boundary.
Then there’s the issue of sacrificing perfectly good arable land for housing, rather than use brownfield sites...
Isn’t about time the powers that be used a bit of joined-up thinking to better balance the need for additional housing with the environment and our increasing need for food?