Monday 20 May 2019

Cornish hedges under threat from developers, say conservationists

Structure of county’s hedges mean they do not get same protection as those elsewhere
Sun 5 May 2019 13.31 BST First published on Sun 5 May 2019 13.29 BST
The Cornish hedge – teeming with flora and fauna and one of the most beloved features of the landscape in the far south-west of Britain – is under threat from developers, conservationists are warning.
Some Cornish hedges are believed to be more than 4,000 years old, making them among the oldest human-built structures in Britain.
Unfortunately, because the Cornish hedge has such a distinctive structure – consisting typically of earth and stone with trees or bushes growing out of the top – it does not necessarily receive the same protection in law afforded to conventional hedgerows across England and Wales.
The Cornwall Wildlife Trust has raised concern that precious hedges are being lost when housing estates or industrial sites are built and Cornwall council is asking the UK government to help it save the hedges.
Cheryl Marriott, head of conservation at the trust, said many miles of Cornish hedges had already vanished. “They are a vital element of our landscape,” she said. “They are being lost primarily to developments such as big housing or industrial estates.”

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