The Walshaw Moor Estate proposed new stone and timber track across protected blanket bog will not go ahead, thanks to the efforts of local residents who objected to the planning application, Mark Avery’s legal challenge to Natural England, and Natural England’s resulting withdrawal of support for the track.
Grouse moor owners and their allies claim heather burning on peatland is necessary for habitat restoration and reduction of wildfire risk.
The RSPB’s management of Geltsdale reserve in Cumbria shows that this is not the case. Continue reading
Thanks to legal action by Mark Avery, and more than 100 people who objected to Walshaw Moor Estate’s planning application, Natural England has produced a new Habitats Regulations Assessment of the Walshaw Moor Estate’s proposed track across blanket bog.
On the basis of this new Habitats Regulations Assessment – which concludes that the track would cause permanent loss and damage to protected habitat, as well as negatively affecting protected birds – Natural England have written to Calderdale and Pendle local planning authorities objecting to the proposal to build a track across Walshaw Moor.
Despite the Estate’s claims that the proposed track was to enable fire engines to quickly reach the site of possible fires, it is intended for the convenience of grouse shooters.
You can read more about this on Mark Avery’s blog here.
Now it’s up to Calderdale and Pendle Councils’ planning committees to say no to Walshaw Moor Estate’s planning application. Continue reading
The moors above Hebden Bridge are some of Yorkshire’s most iconic beauty spots – and also a vital source of biodiversity, a huge natural carbon sink and a natural means of slowing the flow of pluvial flooding into the Upper Calder Valley – if not mismanaged for grouse shooting.
Yorkshire Water has put them in jeopardy. The company lets out uplands to grouse shooters who decimate the wildlife for sport by trap and gun. Not only this – large sections of heather are deliberately burnt to increase game bird numbers, destroying blanket bog and contributing to flooding in the valley and other sections of the county. By leasing out land for grouse shooting, Yorkshire Water is damaging wildlife, habitat, visitor experiences and the regional economy.
What shall we do? Saturday 11 August is the day before the start of the grouse shooting season. We will hold a respectful protest in Hebden Bridge’s Town Square to urge Yorkshire Water to stop leasing land above the town for grouse shooting. Continue reading
Posted from here.
Here is the link to the planning application 18/00237/FUL| Formation of new stone and timber access tracks to connect to existing stone tracks, including passing places and turning circle | Land At Coordinates 396528 435776 Widdop Road Heptonstall Hebden Bridge Calderdale, on the Calderdale Council Planning Portal.
Since the track also goes into the Pendle Council area, the planning application is also being considered by Pendle Council, you can comment here – the planning application number is 18/0143/FUL.
You’ll need to log in to each planning portal to comment.
Summary of key points for objections to the planning application Continue reading
As is by now widely known, Walshaw Moor Estate’s annual burning on the protected “Natura 2000” uplands creates an increased risk of flooding in Calder Valley towns.
This is responsible for around 2.5-5% of the peak flow in Hebden Bridge during floods – roughly the difference between over-topping flood barriers in shop and home doorways, and staying below that level. Continue reading
Posted from here.
A new modelling study and investigation into how annual burning on the Walshaw Moor Estate (WME) may affect high river flows in Hebden Bridge has shown that the most effective way of managing the moors in order to reduce the peak flow at Hebden Bridge is to eliminate burning and encourage conservation and restoration of Sphagnum. Over time, this will allow sphagnum to replace some or much of the cotton and moorland grasses and heather.
Hebden Bridge residents and business people gathered in St Georges Square at 9am on 12th and 13th August – the start of the grouse shooting season – to protest against the devastation of Walshaw Moor’s blanket bog and other habitats by industrial – scale grouse rearing. They then walked up to Walshaw Moor for a picnic and fun day that included checking the state of the blanket bog. Continue reading
Hebden Bridge people will gather in St Georges Square at 9am on 12th and 13th August to protest the not-so-glorious 12th August, traditionally the start of the grouse shooting season.
It is widely accepted that mismanagement of the Walshaw Moor blanket bogs for intensive grouse rearing has contributed to three severe floods in Hebden Bridge over the last four years, and downstream in the Calder Valley.
Some households and businesses have still not recovered from the terrible Boxing Day flood last year, when the town centre was under up to five feet of filthy water. Continue reading