HC Deb 10 November 1987 vol 122 cc136-7W
Mr. Ron Davies

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many forestry development schemes in the United Kingdom have proceeded without a Forestry Commission planting licence in each of the last three years and in 1987 to date; and if he will make a statement.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton

There have been two cases during this period of large-scale planting taking place without approval under a Forestry Commission grant scheme. Both of these were in 1985. Some small-scale planting without grant will also have taken place, but the commission does not necessarily know of all such cases. Estimates of the amount of planting without grant are published in the commission's annual reports.

Mr. Chris Smith

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is the policy of the Forestry Commission towards the erection of electric fencing around forest plantations by(a) the commission and (b) private landowners; what provision is made for (i) warning notices to be clearly displayed and (ii) stiles or gates to be established, in circumstances where electric fencing is erected; and whether any conditions relating to the safety of the public in circumstances where there is electric fencing are attached to grant aid for forestry.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton

A small amount of electrified fencing is in use in some commission forests, but only on a trial basis. The commission's general policy is to refuse grant aid for private forestry schemes where the use of electrified fencing is proposed. It is fully accepted that wherever such fencing is in use adequate warning notices and crossing facilities should be provided.

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