People can see for themselves how proposals to look after Cannock Chase for the next decade would work.
An open day is being held at the Cannock Chase Visitor Centre, Marquis Drive, between 10am and 3pm on Sunday, March 17th.
The proposals, supported by Natural England, include a mixture of methods including cutting and controlled burning of heather, the cutting and thinning of trees and scrub, and spraying bracken, as well as a small pilot scheme to return traditional low-level grazing in the south of the Chase.
Mark Winnington, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member responsible for Cannock Chase, said:
This area is designated at national and European level for its wildlife interest, as well as being a fantastic place for recreation, landscape and cultural heritage.
We have a duty to conserve the area’s special features and keep the site accessible, so we must actively manage it otherwise scrubland and small trees would start spreading and change what we have.”
The displays will provide information about the different methods, including the reintroduction of no more than six cattle in the Moors Gorse area next year and staff will be on hand to discuss the processes.
Mark Winnington added:
The pilot grazing scheme in a small area will enable us to introduce the idea carefully and let people see how it would work in practice.
Cattle used to graze on the Chase many years ago, and still do at places like Chasewater and Hednesford. It’s an important, natural way of maintaining the habitat.”
A pair of Hereford cattle will be present on the day to show the type of traditional breeds often used in conservation grazing schemes.
Further information about the proposals can be found at www.staffordshire.gov.uk/managingcannockchase including more information about the condition of the site and details of the Moors Gorse pilot.