Menu
 
Home | News | Ploughing halted after breach of conditions
 
News | 27th December 2020
 

Ploughing halted after breach of conditions

Forestry watchdog steps in to investigate the loss of deep peat

 
 
 

SCOTTISH Forestry halted work on a forestry planting scheme near Langholm after it discovered the company was not complying with the conditions.

The agency was alerted to the possibility that landowner James Jones & Sons Ltd of Lockerbie was ploughing deep peat, which is not allowed, at Tansy Hill.

The site is on Cleuchfoot Farm, a former sheep farm tenanted by David and Alison Telfer.

Through social media Matt Cross, a campaigner against vast monoculture forestry, contacted Scottish Forestry and alerted officials.

He had seen photos of the planting and was concerned by what they showed.

Last Friday a Scottish Forestry spokesperson said: “We were grateful to be alerted to the ground preparation works at this tree planting site.

“The concerns raised were that contractors on the privately-owned site had broken UK Forestry Standards and had ploughed into deep peat above the allowed depth.

“Deep peat is very important in sequestering and locking up harmful C02 emissions so no-one should be planting on deep peat below 50 cm.

“Our woodland officers visited the site very quickly and sampled various parts of the groundworks.

“Initial investigations found that on at least one occasion these regulations on deep peat had been broken.

“Subsequently, we asked work on the site to stop immediately, pending further investigations.

“This is normal practice when we find works which appear not to be complying with forestry regulations.

“We now intend to carry out a more detailed analysis at the site before we decide on the next steps.

“We have a number of regulatory and enforcement options available to us. They could include corrective action to reinstate the site so the deep peat is fully restored.”

The spokeperson updated the situation on Monday and added: “We had a positive meeting with the contractor on the site and they have agreed a plan to reinstate the very small area of deep peat which was disturbed outwith our guidelines.

This is a satisfactory outcome and we are pleased quick action is being undertaken.”

He added that less than a hectare of deep peat was disturbed out of the 30 hectares which had been ploughed.

He added said: “We have been discussing remediation measures with the contractor and will revisit the site once we are informed that these works have been completed.

“All sites are inspected as part of our ongoing work and any other sites, which are submitted in the area, will be inspected.”

An RSPB spokesperson said: “We support woodland expansion in Scotland, especially of native woodlands, given the nature and carbon benefits they can provide.

“Where trees are located, whatever their purpose, is really important to prevent damage to areas of existing high nature and carbon value.

“For this reason, planting on deep peat is not allowed and surveys are required to prevent this.

“On the face of it, this planting schemes appears to be on peaty soils and we wonder whether all the necessary checks and detailed surveys have been made before the application and before consent was given. “It feels like the system needs tightening up to avoid this kind of thing happening and we look to landowners, forest agents and Scottish Forestry to make sure this happens.”

Oliver Mundell, Dumfriesshire MSP, said: “The events at Tansy Hill have confirmed many people’s worst fears about commercial forestry.

“It is clear that profits are being put before the environment and the rules ignored.

“I’m worried this is not an isolated incident and I would like Scottish Forestry’s investigations to look back at some of the other recent planting in Eskdale and commit to closer inspections of future controversial plans, including at Warblaw.

“Not only should planting on peat be ringing alarm bells but so too should be the need for such speed. Large chunks of good farmland and open hill are being replaced by a monoculture of sitka spruce.

“I have asked the government to confirm whether it’s aware of the situation and plan to take the matter further.”

A query was also raised with Dumfries and Galloway Council’s planning authority by a member of the public about the bridge built over the Logan Water.

A council spokesperson said: “Planning permission was granted on October 16 for a bridge. There were no planning conditions attached to the consent.
“It was brought to our attention that works had begun at the site. The matter was investigated and there are no breaches of planning control at this time.”

 
 
Would you like to support us?

The Eskdale and Liddesdale Advertiser is our community owned local newspaper and even in today’s troubled times, we aim to bring you local news and articles in an impartial, responsible and factual way.

We hope you have enjoyed reading this free article but we need your support so we can keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent and keeps you up to date with what is happening in Eskdale and Liddesdale.

Every reader’s contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to us.
 
 
‘Owned by the Community...Published for the Community’
Do you have a story?

Please get in touch if you have a story or article you would like to see published.

Related Articles

Opposition advised over Faw Side Windfarm

Windfarm would be inappropriate and overbearing

 

Common Ridings

Organisations hail return of ancient celebrations

 

Significant uncertainty surrounding flood scheme

Concerned residents say the plans will be unaffordable and undeliverable

 

Knock back for shooting range

Developers will carry on with plan for training facility

 

Park Drain Ditched

Council remove drainage channel from park in flood scheme proposals

 

We welcome Penny as new community editor

Penny Johnstone brings her positivity and experience to the E&L

 

Confidence will return

Talk of change from Pandemic to endemic gives businesses hope

 

Massive donation to Tarras Valley Reserve

Anonymous donor takes funding over the quarter-way mark

 

Communities have pulled together despite the setbacks

Better days are coming, so let’s all look forward to…

 

Scott’s coachman

Langholm sisters investigate their forebears

 

Everyone encouraged to follow new Covid rules

Evidence suggests Omicron cases are set to double every two…

 

Flood gates installed

Copshaw residents get extra protection

 

Chillifest is a hot topic on BBC’s The One Show

Organisers interviewed and event shown on national television

 

Arwen becomes unexpected guest at twins’ birthday treat

A BIRTHDAY treat turned into a real adventure for one…

 

Aftermath of Arwen

Huge storm leaves structural damage and hundreds of trees down…

 

Positive response to Callisterhall wind farm

A PUBLIC consultation of the Callisterhall wind farm saw a…

 

Call for bus company to revert to old timetable

Politicians support petition to return to pre-Covid service

 

Newcastleton will benefit from its share of £1.34m. government funding

NEWCASTLETON and District Community Trust has secured funding from the…

 

Fast progress with jags in face of increasing cases

Region ploughs on with roll-out of boosters and flu vaccinations

 

11 brass bands descend on town for day’s contest

Langholm Town Band hosts 2021 Borders Entertainment Contest

 

Shooting range appeal

Scottish government asked to overturn council decision

 

Walking in the rain

Rotary Umbrella Walk raises smiles and funds despite the weather

 

Public meets flood experts face-to-face

D&G Council’s two-day engagement attracts large numbers

 

Faw Side wind farm will see public inquiry

Dumfries & Galloway Council and developers come under fire

 

Fiery, friendly fun at first ChilliFest

Several hundred visitors make all the preparation worthwhile

 

Trip Hazard

Surface of suspension bridge unsafe

 

Second phase buyout

If successful, nature reserve would expand by 5,300 acres

 

Kim donates locks

Little Princess Trust helps ease diagnosis

 

COP26 pilgrimage visits Langholm

PILGRIMS on their way to the COP26 climate change conference…

 

Local MP and councillors react to MP Sir David Amess death

MPs and councillors will continue to engage with constituents

 

Organisations benefit from Recovery Fund

RECOVERY funding has been secured for six organisations in Langholm.…

 

Marathon adventure

Eskdalemuir man runs for special charity

 

Borderlands bid rejected

City of Culture not coming our way

 

Brexit given as reason for demise of LEADER

Langholm received around £260,000 in funding from the project

 

SURF award shortlist for Old Police Station

Langholm affordable accommodation project up for prestigious award

 

Walk on the wild side

THE Langholm Initiative will celebrate Community Land Week Scotland with…

 

Up for auction again

‘Standout’ property needs extensive repairs and renovation

 

Copshaw Holm on film

A SHORT film has been created showcasing the payoff from…

 

A Modelling career awaits Langholm teen

Sam Cook signs up with London agency and hits the…

 

Frustration over X95

UNHAPPY locals are calling on Borders Buses to increase the…

 
 
requires mailchimp logins and wired up to a list
Join our mailing list
Keep up to date with all that’s going on at the E&L
This site uses cookies.
Configure
 
Read our privacy policy

This site uses cookies for marketing, personalisation, and analysis purposes. You can opt out of this at any time or view our full privacy policy for more information.