Seven landscape projects in Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) and National Parks across England and Wales have been selected for awards totalling more than £1.2 million in the second round of Landscape Enhancement Initiative (LEI) funding.
The latest areas to benefit from the initiative are Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB in North East Wales, Dorset AONB, and the New Forest, Peak District and Snowdonia National Parks. The seven projects will pursue creative enhancements for the local landscapes, from managing woodland areas and restoring ancient boundaries to encouraging natural habitats, all aimed at screening or diverting attention away from the existing overhead transmission lines.
It is the second release of funding from the LEI, which aims to provide up to £24 million over six years for projects from the 30 AONBs and National Parks containing National Grid electricity infrastructure.
LEI projects funded to date
The latest projects approved by Ofgem for LEI funding in January 2018 demonstrate the variety of projects eligible to receive awards. These seven projects received grants totalling more than £1.2 million:
- Snowdonia Traditional Boundaries (Snowdonia National Park): enhancing traditional boundaries to reinforce their ability to reflect local geology, history and culture.
- Lost Landscapes (Clwydian Range & Dee Valley AONB): restoring historic boundary features as well as tree clearance, heathland restoration and the establishment of roadside nature reserves.
- Magical Marshwood Vale (Dorset AONB): reinstating key natural habitats through measures including hedge laying, orchard planting, pond and river restoration and wild daffodil planting.
- Dyffryn Maentworg Woodland Restoration and Landscape Improvement (Snowdonia National Park): improving habitat connectivity to encourage wildlife, safeguarding historic oak trees and the management of invasive non-native species such as rhododendron.
- Woodland Improvements and Wild Play at Holbury Manor / Warren Copse (New Forest National Park): woodland management surrounding a formal medieval manor and improving amenity through the provision of a ‘wild play’ area for children
- Longdendale Landscape Restoration (Peak District National Park): increasing habitat diversity and restoring landscape features through dry stone wall repair and woodland restoration.
- Dyffryn Ffestiniog (East) Woodland Restoration and Landscape Improvement (Snowdonia National Park): connecting habitats and encouraging wildlife through hedgerow and woodland restoration and rhododendron management.