A new way to manage our grasslands

Grass cutting season starts this week alongside a new scheme to encourage biodiversity and wildflowers in selected areas as part of our ongoing work to make Barnsley more sustainable.

This year, we will be managing some of our grasslands differently by rewilding carefully selected plots across our borough. This will mean allowing small areas of natural grassland to grow, which over time, will improve biodiversity. It will encourage wildflowers, help create new habitats and vital shelter for pollinators and potential species reintroductions.

The selected 16 plots have been identified as having a low variety of wildlife (biodiversity). Rewilding them will make a significant change to this enabling more plants and wildlife to flourish.

Plots will still be actively maintained and attended every 18 days to cut the grass around the plots as well as cutting paths through the grass in suitable places. This will enhance the areas for people to enjoy walking, exercise and nature.

At the end of the season, the grass will be cut, and all of the clippings will be removed from these rewilding sites. This is to ensure that sites are left neat and tidy over the winter period and help to reduce soil fertility because wildflowers thrive in less fertile conditions.

We would like as many people as possible to get involved in our rewilding project. You might be in a school local to the site, a member of a biodiversity study group, you might want to study the area to capture the current species and revisit in the future to see how things are changing, or you might want to help share our rewilding aims. If you would like to be involved please email neighbourhoodservices@barnsley.gov.uk

Cllr Chris Lamb, Cabinet Spokesperson for Environment and Transport said: “This is an exciting project for Barnsley and we’re always looking for ways to increase biodiversity and make our borough more sustainable.

“We are committed to reducing our carbon emissions as a council to Net Zero by 2040. Increasing biodiversity levels is an important part of this ambition.

“By making these small changes, we are hopeful these areas will benefit both wildlife and local people living nearby.”

Find out more information about our rewilding project and grass cutting on our website.

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