Protecting rural landscapes and features

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Hedgerows and watercourses

If you own land with hedgerows or watercourses, you must do everything you reasonably can to keep green cover (natural vegetation) on land:

  • within 2 metres of the centre of a hedgerow, watercourse or field ditch
  • within 1 metre of the top of the bank of a watercourse or field ditch

It’s against the law to remove or destroy certain hedgerows without permission from your local planning authority.

You must also make sure you do not:

  • cultivate or apply fertilisers or pesticides on these strips of green cover
  • cut or trim hedgerows between 1 March and 31 August

Find more information on hedgerow protection and management.