Commenting on Wealden Local Plan


Whether you live in Wealden or on the borders of Eastbourne, Lewes or Rother additional housing growth, in the Wealden area, will affect you. So you should comment on the Draft Local Plan.

“Wealden District Council is preparing a new Local Plan. [it] will be the key planning document for Wealden District. Once adopted, the Local Plan will form part of the Development Plan for the District, replacing all existing local plan policies and will be used to assess and make decisions on planning applications.” There will be 16,000 new houses of which around 8,000 have already been planned for .

It is a challenge to go through all the background documentation. The consultation itself is over 200 pages. So this blog has had to be selective. To begin with here are the top 8 areas in terms of new housing

Most of this will be in South Wealden and especially on the borders of Eastbourne. From this table you can see that much of the local area is already ‘confirmed’. In Willingdon for example all the space is already committed apart from some ‘windfall’. So you may feel it is too late. This is not the case. Within the plan are some policies that have some merit and these should be supported.

Here are some links you will need . The Wealden Local Plan itself including a short video . Then the Consultation Portal – Where you create an account and add comments


The lack of a local plan has made Wealden vulnerable to developers who were likely to win, if they appealed, when their planning submission was rejected. With a plan the council has more control of where housing can go. Without a plan the growth of housing could be higher. If there is a proposed housing development ,that you do not agree with, then you can highlight this in your submission, ideally linking it to the relevant policy.

One of the key concerns is the transport infrastructure. Before reading the rest of the blog you may wish to read this blog, on how over optimistic future predictions , are used by councils and developers to the detriment of residents.

Discussions with relevant district officers, councillors and directors suggest there may be residents who do not support a greener and more active travel agenda . Therefore it is important to support these policies and schemes.

Below are a number of the key chapters in the consultation that are worth commenting on. :-

Chapter 3 is Vision and Objectives

Suggest you strongly support “Sustainable and active travel’ but make points as to how this is not being addressed.

There has been no evidence of any increase in public transport, wheeling, cycling and walking. Many County, District and Borough plans refer to a planned shift away from cars . This has never been delivered. In fact East Sussex CC has not achieved any change in the mix of transport and total vehicle trips have simply increased

Suggest the need for high level plans across multiple sites. There are many examples where each site has its own access road and no attempt made to have public or active travel routes through these developments . For example at Horsebridge there is an area with over 5 different adjacent estates with no co-ordination of the access across them. A house that you want to visit, maybe only a few hundred meters away, but the car may need to exit one estate and then enter another one. On top of this the connections to the Cuckoo Trail, tell cyclists to dismount and push over 200m on sandy narrow tracks to get to the estates. Discriminatory especially to those who use mobility scooters, elderly or with heavy e-bikes

There needs to be a clear strategy to deal with the effect of all this housing growth on the current residents, where the existing streets might have more ‘permeability’ and could then be used as ‘rat runs’.

Plus stress more emphasis needed on actively supporting greater biodiversity, perhaps in adjacent areas, to counteract the consequences of this extra urban housing. Perhaps though Section 106 agreements.

There does not seem to be enough on encouraging reaching net zero through the design of housing in terms of their location and the wider community. This would strongly support higher insulation, solar panels, EV charging and heat pumps

Chapter 4 – Spatial Strategy

Suggest you strongly support “4.18 The benefits of a 20-minute neighbourhood concept are extensive, providing health, social, environmental and economic benefits to people and communities. Additionally, the concept would seek to tackle many of the issues that we need to address through our plan such as reducing carbon emissions, helping people to become more active, reducing mental health issues and loneliness, improving our town and village centres, making our settlements great places to live as well as improving access to affordable healthy food.

Support the statement in “4.26 East Sussex County Council’s Local Transport Plan 4 Consultation(12) supports the 20-minute neighbourhood or the ‘complete, compact and connected neighbourhood’ approach by providing a shift towards supporting healthy lifestyles by walking, wheeling or cycling and more active travel, as well as through the design of public places and healthy places through integrated neighbourhoods.

So from the above, mention your support for higher density dwellings in the centres which should have access to a mix of leisure, shopping and business all nearby and accessible by bus or active travel. You could also add support for 20 mph and school streets

Support – “Policy SS9: Health, Wellbeing and Quality of Life”that creates improved connectivity and supports healthier and more active lifestyles

Chapter 5 – ‘Climate Change’

Generally strongly support

CC1 Net Zero Development Standards – New Build. Support Policy but would prefer a clearer steer around residential standards of insulation, solar, batteries and heat pumps. There are no examples locally which could be seen as evidence of the ideal higher standards

CC4 Carbon sequestration, Support Policy but make the point, large areas of land are being urbanised and it is unlikely that sequestration could be achieved in or around the new housing estates

Policy CC5: Renewable and Low Carbon Energy. Agree with the principle of “Support will be given to community led energy schemes where evidence of community support can be demonstrated”

Policy CC6 Water Efficiency . Support the principles though make the point it is partly the cumulative effect of all these new houses which will determine how both water and waste (Southern and South East Water) cope. Some of the pumping stations, pipes and sewage works are already under strain

Policy CC7 Managing Flood Risk. Support the principle though areas such as between Polegate and Willingdon have always been susceptible to flooding. Concreting over will add to the problem across all the low lying estates. Make reference to the work the Environment Agency are undertaking around flooding and rising sea level.

Policy CC8 Sustainable Drainage. Support the principle such as in CC7 but perhaps question whether previous experience shows if this been dealt with in the past

Chapter 9 Infrastructure

Policy INF1 Infrastructure provision, delivery, and funding. “The provision of infrastructure facilities such as those relating to healthcare and education should be provided” Stress there needs to be guarantees of them being built and that you have concerns based on recent sites that the delivery of schools and health centres may not happen. This is due to the higher build costs and the funds that health and education may have. Plus a need to adhere to DfT’s “Guidance on Land Use/Transport Interaction Models”

Policy INF2 Sustainable transport and active travel– Support this policy. However the local housing developments simply fail on the criteria listed. No attempt appears to have new been made to create viable routes through multiple estates . Routes identified in the LCWIP, that are supposed to be on these sites ,have not been taken into consideration. Good examples would be alongside the railway from Hampden Park to Polegate (such as routes 312 and 225). Recent experience shows that proposed bus and cycle lanes are very vulnerable to being dropped through pressure from those who do not support them. They must be installed.

Policy INF5 Safeguarding of Infrastructure– Support the concept but as already mentioned there are many potential active travel routes in LCWIP that have been ignored through planning.

Policy INF8 Open space, sports and recreation provision– Suggest make the point – There are large areas of open land that have been lost and this cannot be rectified by a few small parks

Chapter 10 Design

Policy DE1 Achieving well-designed and high-quality places. Support the aim however challenge most of the new developments. These are car centric, low traffic neighbourhoods that do not allow through traffic. Most of the current developments have similar housing and add very few community buildings. The road layouts are meandering and do not support more direct routes for active travel . They also do not support bus routes and this will mean when funding runs out residents without a car will struggle. Perhaps building housing for elderly people should be closer to amenities and bus routes on main roads. In ‘Manual for Streets’ it explains the consequences of building ‘car-centric’ estates that make active travel within the estate and to other destinations problematic

Closing comments.

Please read any other chapters and additional documents, if you want to look into this plan in more detail. You have until Friday 10th May 2024 to submit your comments

Restoring Eastbourne’s miniature rainforest

One of the things I love about living in Eastbourne is access straight up onto the South Downs. I enjoy walking on the Downs, taking in the views, especially those that look out to sea, but one of the most enjoyable aspects for me is the chalk grassland. Chalk grasslands are found in northwest Europe, and are some of the most species rich habitats we have, in fact they have even been called the European equivalent to tropical rainforests because they are so species rich. They are particularly rich in plants with up to 45 different species in one square metre on the best sites. You can find many species of orchids, wild thyme and other herbs, tiny eye-brights, milkworts, and fairy flax, bold knap-weeds, and fine grasses as well as the County flower the blue and spikey round-headed rampion. They are also known for their invertebrates, with numerous species beetle, butterfly, moth and grasshopper found exclusively on chalk grasslands.

You would be forgiven for thinking that as we live at the foot of the South Downs – a chalk ridge that runs all the way to Winchester in Hampshire – and that for the most part in the open landscape of the eastern end of the Downs, that chalk grassland is the dominant habitat. Unfortunately like many other habitats in England our abysmal lost of biodiversity has reduced the amount of chalk grassland across the South Downs to just 4 % of its original cover. But before digging into why we have so little left, lets get into what exactly chalk grasslands are.



Chalk grasslands are often referred to as calcareous grasslands. This is a fancier way of saying something is rich in calcium carbonate. In this case it is the chalk bedrock under the soil. However, this is really important as it affects the pH of the soil. That scale of acid to alkaline. And because the bedrock of the South Downs is chalk, the soils here are alkaline. It is worth pointing out that another feature of these soils is that they are generally shallow and very nutrient poor. Sometimes the plants that grow on places like the South Downs are referred to as calcicoles. A calcicole is a botanical word which simply means a chalk loving plant. So, the chalk grasslands on the South Downs are a suit of plants adapted to the alkaline soils which overlay the chalk bedrock, many of which are restricted to growing only in places where chalk or limestone underlay the soil. And despite what may sound contrary, these plants thrive on the thin nutrient poor soils, indeed it is these very conditions that make chalk grasslands so species rich because it stimulates competition between species.

But why is there so little of it, and what is growing on the South Downs if it’s not chalk grassland? There used to be far more chalk grassland on the Downs than there is now and that is due to former land use. Some form of management is required to maintain chalk grasslands. Livestock grazing, on the higher and steeper slopes, especially with sheep is the traditional use of the South Downs. Sheep grazing has been active on much of the Downs since before the Roman times, but was dominant from the medieval period onwards until World War II. The soils on the Downs are shallow and nutrient poor, and often dry because rainwater percolates away quickly through chalk. Conditions that meant that until more recently this land was unsuitable for arable (crop) production, which was confined to the foot of the Downs, although some of the south facing more gentle slopes have been ploughed since the 1700’s. Post-World War II saw the advancement of technology in agriculture through machinery, biocides, fertilizers and resistant crop strains which lead to land that had previously been considered unsuitable for crop production being ploughed up on the South Downs. This greatly affected the way the South Downs were farmed; with only the steepest slopes left unploughed.

The reality is that most of it has been lost. What remains of good quality chalk grassland on the South Downs make up less than 30% of the calcareous grassland in the whole of the southeast of England- other areas include the Surrey Hills and the Kent Downs. Most areas of chalk grassland are confined almost exclusively to highly fragmented patches on the steep north facing slopes called the scarp slope. This becomes really evident if you ever look at the location of protected sites known as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI’s) across the eastern half of the Downs. They are predominately found on the northern facing slopes. Fragmentation, or the breaking up of large areas of chalk grassland into smaller isolated patches leads to the rapid loss of calcicole plant species from remaining chalk grassland, and associated invertebrates. The good news was that the steeper slopes provided an environment more resistant to change for chalk grasslands, because the soil can be especially thin on these slopes, which in turn favours the calcicole species. However, farming practices are continuing to change, a new problem has arisen as the steeper slopes are abandoned from livestock grazing or indeed any management at all, which has led to the encroachment of scrub and ‘secondary’ woodland. This smothers the grassland and has meant the gradual loss of calcareous grassland on even these steeper north facing slopes as well.

Restoration of chalk grassland often involves the removal of scrub, trees and shrubs and the reintroduction of grazing to maintain its characteristic short grass. If an area can’t be grazed then it can be cut, although the cuttings need to be removed, this is because as cuttings rot down, they return nutrients to the soil and this allows plant species that we wouldn’t normally see gain a foothold into these plant communities, such as nettles. The little calcicoles cannot compete with the likes of quick growing and tall nettles and soon disappear.

Eastbourne is no exception in having lost some of the steep scarp slope to secondary woodland, which more recently has been devastated by ash die-back disease. However, we are also fortunate in Eastbourne as we do still have some really good south facing chalk grassland particularly between Holywell and Cow Gap.

Fortunately chalk grassland is now designated a ‘priority habitat’. This means it is a habitat that has been identified as threatened with loss and requiring conservation action, something that the South Downs National Park is working hard on. There is another important grassland on the chalk slopes around Eastbourne, known as good quality ‘semi-improved grassland’. Good quality semi-improved grassland is the grassland best placed for restoration to chalk grassland, as it contains many of the calcicole species. But what sets it apart from chalk grassland is that it is likely to have been victim to agricultural ‘improvement’ at some point, or other poor management from which it is now recovering from.

If you want to see exactly where chalk and semi-improved grasslands can be found in and around Eastbourne, it is worth first looking at Defra’s Magic Map Application (, an open resource that maps all of England’s designated protected sites and areas as well as priority habitats. Below is a snapshot to illustrate all of the priority grasslands found in and around Eastbourne.


I couldn’t write this blog without talking about carbon, because this is the Eastbourne EcoAction website right? Well chalk grassland (and indeed all other species rich grasslands) are a huge source of carbon stores in their soils. In fact, carbon stores in grassland soils are, in some cases are as good as the stores in woodland soils. However, disturbance of the soil, such as ploughing or digging up releases that stored carbon back into the atmosphere and it can take a long-time to restore what has been lost. We also now know that the more species diverse grasslands hold more carbon that species poor grasslands – another great reason to love chalk grasslands, and see them being restored.There are four priority grassland habitats: calcareous grassland (khaki), coastal and floodplain grazing marsh (blue), lowland meadow (lime), and good quality semi-improved grasslands (purple). The map shows how lucky we are to have so much south facing chalk grassland, a rarity indeed. Likewise, we can see how much of the scarp slope facing Eastbourne is good quality semi-improved grassland, ideal for restoration to chalk grassland.

So, although much has been lost, chalk grassland is recognised as one of the most biodiverse habitats we have in this country, and here in Eastbourne have it on our doorstep – our own rainforest in miniature! Restoration projects help enhance and restore it to its former glory and that in turn supports a host of other species, many of which are also in decline that are dependant on it. So next time you are out on the Downs, I encourage you to try and find some of the places the chalk and semi-improved grassland exists, take or download a plant I.D. guide and see what you can find.

Author: Sarah Brotherton is an ecologist who lives in Eastbourne, currently working for the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

What about e-scooters?

The sale of E-scooters is gradually increasing and over the summer it is possible that their popularity will increase even more. There are extensive trials of rental E-scooters taking place across England to assess their suitability for use in towns and cities. The E-scooter is classified as a PLEV, Personal Light Electric Vehicle, a type of motor vehicle.

There are some issues that need to be considered when thinking about the use of E-scooters.

Some rules about E–Scooters

  • E-scooters can be hired in one of the 30 or so permitted towns or cities in England such as Tees Valley, Liverpool, Nottingham and Slough. The number of towns permitting their use is gradually increasing.
  • The E-scooter must have an MOT and be road taxed, the rental company arrange this.
  • To drive an E-scooter you need to have a provisional driving licence as a minimum and be 18 years old.
  • In trial areas they can only be used on the roads (not motorway) and on cycle lanes.
  • They cannot be used on the pavement
  • Privately owned E-scooters (those not hired) cannot be used on the road or the pavement and can only be used on private land with the land owner’s permission.


  • The E-scooter has a speed limit of 15.5 mph.
  • Only one person may use the hired E-scooter
  • The rider does not need to wear a crash helmet, although they are recommended.
  • In Newcastle, their use has been stopped between 11 p.m and 5 a.m. because of a number of drink driving offences associated with them.
  • There have been concerns where riders have been riding on the pavement where the young, those with poor mobility, eyesight or hearing can be at risk of injury.


  • As they use electric motors, their use in town centres should improve air quality.
  • Their use could reduce congestion in town centres if people use them instead of cars.
  • Their use could reduce noise pollution in town centres.
  • Their use could reduce CO2 emissions and so help tackle climate change if the energy used for charging is renewable.
  • By allocating road space to scooters and bicycles this could make town centres a more pleasant environment for people to use.
  • If scooter hire is available at transport hubs, such as railway/bus stations, then this may encourage travellers to leave their cars at home and use e-scooters for the last miles to their destination.


  • At the end of a journey, the scooter is often just left on the pavement causing an obstruction.
  • The rental company that collect the scooters after use often use fossil fuel vehicles, which can cause air pollution and CO2 emissions.
  • The life of a scooter is quite short, 1 to 2 years, which means many have to be repeatedly made and recycled. This process creates CO2.
  • The electricity used to charge them may well not be produced by renewable supplies so their use can contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.
  • People may prefer to use e-scooters to walking, cycling and using public transport.
  • The E-scooter could have a detrimental effect on taxi use.

David Everson

EEAN Transport Group

Photo credit: Dirk Vorderstraße

Cycle Lanes along the Seafront

Compromise, conciliation, and consultation, all seem such reasonable words, and opponents to cycling often use them against Bespoke Cycle Group. They are perhaps partly the reason that active travel (buses, cycling and walking) in Eastbourne is in decline.

Compromise, conciliation, and consultation, all seem such reasonable words, and opponents to cycling often use them against Bespoke Cycle Group. They are perhaps partly the reason that active travel (buses, cycling and walking) in Eastbourne is in decline.

The Eastbourne Cycling Plan makes reference to the need for a strategy, reducing congestion, pollution and improved public health, along with a network of cycle routes that includes the controversial one along the seafront from Fisherman’s Green to the Pier.

It all sounds familiar, until you realise that this is the 1994 version. Quite usefully it shows the data from 1981. The share of trips by car was 40%, bus 14% and cycle 4%. Now the shares are 70%, 5% and 2%. The current scheme that requires Bespoke to “compromise” is the Covid-19 seafront cycle lane. East Sussex County Council decided this week it wants further consultation. It is a difficult choice for Bespoke to make. The seaward side was bid through Covid-19 funds, and was a segregated, safe and secure route. In fact, probably the one specified over 25 years ago. The landward option, not shared with Bespoke, is mainly paint on the road. In its favour are a 20mph speed limit and some signage. Unfortunately, it will be like the rest of the cycle infrastructure in town and hardly fit for purpose.

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But for Bespoke it may be “take it or leave it”. It is the type of poor solution that compromise, conciliation and consultation create. It looks like not all the Covid-19 money will be spent and there has been the suggestion that ESCC’s new bid for Tranche2 will partly fail. ESCC acknowledge that “whilst emphasis [from the national guidance expects] schemes which enable the reallocation of road space for pedestrians and cyclists” their bid is around “footway surfacing and kerbs”.

Because 70% of trips are undertaken by car, this dominates the whole approach to transport within the county. Even to the extent that councillors, businesses and shops overestimate the number of people using cars and their relative spend. Considering this it took a certain strength, perhaps against the views of some of the residents, for Councillor Tutt to support the seaward side, as he did at the Transport committee.

For all the ESCC investment, the gold standard test is the actual cycle numbers. The new DfT statistics by Local Authority show no improvement across the county in the last 4 years. For those who cycle once a month, East Sussex, as one of the 25 similar shire counties, has only one county that performs worse.

In conclusion, there is no evidence that the current approach, via consultation and compromise, with the most powerful groups getting their way, will achieve any significant changes in road congestion, public health, pollution and CO2. The requirement is still for a limited number of safe, segregated and secure routes into town. This would be in line with the new DfT guidance, where they clearly state that paint on the road is no longer enough.

Paul Humphreys

Bespoke & Cycle East Sussex

Photo credit: Paul Gillett

Government Announces UK is Failing on CO2 Emissions

Eastbourne Borough Council, like many other local authorities, has committed to do all it can to reduce carbon emissions in the town to net-zero by 2030 and has declared a climate emergency. However, much of this cannot be achieved without Government initiatives. Their advisers this week are warning that the UK is falling behind on its own target to cut greenhouse gas emissions and risks an increase in CO2 emissions now that the COVID-19 lockdown is easing.

Eastbourne Borough Council,  like many other local authorities,  has committed to do all it can to reduce carbon emissions in the town to net-zero by 2030 and has declared a climate emergency. However, much of this cannot be achieved without Government initiatives. Their advisers this week are warning that the UK is falling behind on its own target to cut greenhouse gas emissions and risks an increase in CO2 emissions now that the COVID-19 lockdown is easing.

Lord Deben, chair of the committee on climate change (CCC), published its progress report to parliament this week and it states that ministers must act fast to avoid a carbon rebound. Chris Stark, chief executive of the CCC, said: “Without central and integrated leadership we will fail in our task”.

These initiatives would include more active travel, new schemes to insulate homes, raising carbon taxes, switching to electric vehicles and ensuring reliable broadband to allow working from home.

Much of this can be supported by the local authorities. Taken from the best examples in the UK is the Friends of the Earth, Ashden,  31 climate actions for councils. This outlines practical suggestions to reduce carbon at a local level in areas that local authorities have either direct control of or could influence.

So how much progress is being made?  This week the latest CO2 statistics for Local Authorities were published by the Government. Eastbourne, for geographic and industrial reasons, tends to have a lower than average carbon footprint.

The latest data is for 2018 and shows a 1.4% decline from 2017. The carbon footprint for Eastbourne is now 293,000 tonnes per annum or around 3 tonnes per person. This reflects the steady improvement across the UK, over the last 10 years, with less coal and more renewables.  So for example, one challenge for the town is natural gas, which is over 40% of all our carbon emissions.

Locally, as across the rest of the UK, commercial and residential sectors have shown significant reductions with only transport remaining stubbornly at around 80,000 tonnes p.a. The report also states that nearly all of Eastbourne’s footprint is within “the scope of influence of the local authority”.

With 2030 only 10 years away there will need to be a major change in strategy to even begin to approach the net-zero carbon target.

Read Delivering a Better Eastbourne by EEAN Transport Group outlining some suggestions for improving our town’s carbon emissions.

Paul Humphreys

EEAN, Transport Group

Img Veeterzy, Unsplash.

Start by Planting a Tree

Our planet needs trees. We all know that. Without them we wouldn’t be alive today. People and animals breathe in oxygen, and breathe out carbon dioxide. Trees and plants do the opposite. We’ve evolved together with them over millennia. There’s a natural balance to our ecosystem that’s held in place since the start of life on earth.

Our planet needs trees. We all know that. Without them we wouldn’t be alive today. People and animals breathe in oxygen, and breathe out carbon dioxide. Trees and plants do the opposite. We’ve evolved together with them over millennia. There’s a natural balance to our ecosystem that’s held in place since the start of life on earth. But now we’re tipping that balance and threatening our very existence. Our carbon emissions, from burning fossil fuels for electricity, heat and transportation, have risen to the level where they are far outstripping the carbon that is consumed by trees and plants, and the resulting climate emergency has been widely acknowledged.

In Eastbourne, the Borough Council formally declared a state of climate emergency in July this year, and pledged to “continue working in close partnership with local groups and stakeholders to deliver a carbon neutral town by 2030”.

With the Council’s support and full engagement, local environmental groups have pooled together to create an Eco Action Network, comprising a number of working groups, each focussed on specific ways to achieve this goal. The Carbon Capture group is focussed on removal of CO2 from the atmosphere by any means possible – planting trees, shrubs and hedges, building living walls, nurturing kelp and marine plant forests off the coast, rewilding wasteland, and so on.

But if our challenge was tough to start off with, it just got a whole lot harder. You may not yet have heard of ‘ash dieback’, but as an Eastbourne resident, that situation is likely to change very soon. Ash dieback is a devastating tree disease that is threatening to wipe out up to 95% of the UK population of ash trees. It is a fungal infection carried in the air, that unfortunately cannot be prevented or cured. And it spreads like wildfire. The past 12 months have witnessed the devastation of the ash forests which run along the downland slopes that cradle the western side of the town. From Butts Brow in Willingdon, approximately four miles down to the edge of the Meads.

All we can do is to cut down the trees to prevent them from falling as they die and rot. And it’s not finished yet. On Monday, 2 December 2019, the council and the Forestry Commission began a tree felling programme that is expected to last till 2024. Over the next 5 years, a staggering one hundred thousand plus ash trees will be lost to Eastbourne for ever.

This will have a huge impact. The landscape of the edge of the Downs will change completely. The affected woodland and streets around it will be cordoned off and inaccessible as the work takes place. Eastbourne’s current level of 5% tree cover – and the CO2 they consume – will be reduced dramatically, leaving us with an even steeper mountain to climb.

Ash dieback threatens the character of our town and the health of our planet. In one way or another, it affects all of us who live in Eastbourne. If you ever walk on the downs or ramble through the woods, you will see and feel the changes for yourself. This is not someone else’s problem. It is all of ours. However, working together, we can achieve so much more. If everyone in Eastbourne were to plant just one tree in their garden, a third of the entire lost Ash population would be replaced in one fell swoop! Community collaboration is the key to success. It will take a coordinated and concerted effort by all of us over the next ten years, not only overturn the loss of that many trees but to go way beyond that.

Call for Action

The ECO Action Network groups have begun the work with the council to find ways that we can reach our 2030 goal. On a personal level, you may ask what you can do. There are many changes you can make, but for now, if you have a garden, start by planting a tree.

You can get very small saplings free from the Woodland Trust. Or visit local nurseries for bare-root trees, hedges or shrubs – whatever suits your space. Stick to the UK grown native species ideally. But anything that thrives in our climate will do.

Adam Rose

ECO Action Network, Carbon Capture Group