Ref: CSFF060009

Lead: Ann Cantrell,

Group members: 27

Length of agreement: 3

Area of group (Hectares): 1429

The Group will focus on biodiversity particularly for ancient and native woodlands, priority grasslands, lowland meadow, Purple-moor-grass and rush pasture; priority species (birds, willow tit, redstart, pied flycatcher, marsh tit) and other priority habitats found in the area – Lowland Acid Grassland, Heathland, Lowland Fen).

Woodland will be a primary target, which overlaps with other priorities particularly biodiversity and water. The group will look to increase the quality and amount of these key habitat types Within the valley, looking for opportunities to buffer, connect and restore habitats.

Restoring high quality grasslands, scrubby fringes and rough grassland near to existing key sites and features, especially the Churnett/Coombes Valley SSSIs Will deliver multiple benefits. As central features of the focus area, these SSSIs Will be a target for the group including identifying areas to benefit woodland edge birds through scrub development and look to better connect the valleys’ woodlands through prudent hedge and tree planting.

There will also be activities related to water to combat issues with water quality in the River Churnet and contribute to flooding issues such as tree and hedge planting providing multiple benefits, reducing run off and slowing the flow.

We will also look at opportunities to better manage the upper reaches of the River Churnet and Endon Brook around the town of Leek to address flood risk. Measure that contribute to the farm wildlife and pollinator package will be developed, as will measures to control invasive species.