Forests

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 7th January 2016.

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Photo of Alex Cunningham Alex Cunningham Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans she has to collect data on the loss of ancient woodland to development.

Photo of Rory Stewart Rory Stewart The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

This Government recognises the importance of England’s trees, woods and forests. Our ancient woodlands are especially valuable to us. Indeed they reflect our heritage and identity, as well as providing a unique and rich habitat for our wildlife.

That is why Natural England is working with partners to update and improve the Ancient Woodland Inventory. The planning system records the loss of ancient woodland where development proposals require an Environmental Statement and these losses are then a matter of public record.

Given this, we have no plans to collect data from Local Authorities on the loss of ancient woodland to development.

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