Scientists from the universities of Leeds, Sheffield, East Anglia, Durham and Sussex are embarking on new science research projects worth over £1 million in the Peak District to understand what rural policy changes mean for the future of rural livelihoods and the countryside.
Much of Britains drinking water comes from uplands. They are important for tourism, farming and hunting, and are home to threatened plant and animal species. But the face of our uplands is changing. Farm subsidies have been overhauled; new EU rules regulate land management impacts on water quality; additional public rights of way have been opened; and traditional management practices like heather burning are receiving increasing scrutiny. The potential impacts on rural communities are huge, and nowhere more so than in the Peak District, which lies within an hours drive for about a third of the UK population.
Chris Dean, project manager of the Moors for the Future Partnership in the Peak District National Park said: “The collision of diverse interests in the uplands really comes to a head in the Peak District, where all the different drivers of upland change are at their most pronounced.”
Hannah Love | alfa
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