High Speed 2 Line: Forests

Department for Transport written question – answered at on 22 June 2022.

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Photo of Tan Dhesi Tan Dhesi Shadow Minister (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he plans to merge the HS2 Woodland Fund with the England Woodland Creation Offer.

Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Department for Transport)

There are significant overlaps between the HS2 Woodland Fund and the England Woodland Creation Offer (EWCO), both in terms of their aims and the way that the schemes work. As a result, HS2 Ltd has been working with Defra and the Forestry Commission on a plan to bring the two into alignment with each other, to ensure that both woodland creation schemes can continue to meet their objectives, whilst avoiding confusion for applicants. This is unlikely to result in a full merger of the schemes as there are some differences to be preserved - for example, the HS2 Woodland Fund differs from EWCO in that it also provides grants to support the restoration of degraded woodland. Discussions with stakeholders to resolve some outstanding details are ongoing.

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