HC Deb 27 February 1992 vol 204 cc565-6W
Mr. Colvin

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when he intends to introduce grants for hedgerow maintenance.

Mr. Heseltine

[pursuant to his reply, 20 November 1991, c. 159]: As part of our initiative "Action for the Countryside" which, together with my right hon. Friend the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, I launched today, we are introducing a new hedgerow incentive scheme to counter the problem of loss of hedgerows through lack of maintenance. The scheme will encourage farmers and landowners to manage hedgerows in ways that will ensure their long-term survival. The hedgerow incentive scheme will target hedgerows of particular historic, landscape or wildlife importance. Hedgerows are also being lost through removal and we have announced our intention to legislate when parliamentary time permits to introduce a hedgerow notification scheme.

In addition to our proposed new hedgerow incentive scheme, "Action for the Countryside" reviews other countryside policies, looks at the changes under way and sets out new initiatives for the future.

The new initiatives concentrate on action to maintain a prosperous economy and thriving communities in the countryside, to protect and enhance the landscape, to provide for public enjoyment of the countryside and to protect and conserve wildlife. They are not put forward in isolation. The initiatives described here carry forward the principles of "This Common Inheritance" (Cmd 1200) and

Comparison of 1991–92 and 1992–93 educaton services standard spending assessments for each local education authority in England showing overall percentage changes and the percentage change attributable to updating pupil numbers
Local authority Percentage change 1991–92 to 1992–93 education standard spending assessment per cent. Percentage change attributable to pupil numbers per cent.
Total England 7.1
Total Shire counties 6.9 -0.2
Total Metropolitan districts 6.4 0.0
Total inner London boroughs including City 9.8 1.2
Total outer London boroughs 8.2 0.7
Total London boroughs 8.8 0.9
Total Shire areas 6.9 -0.2
Total Metropolitan areas 6.4 0.0
Total London 8.8 0.9
Isles of Scilly 19.6 10.1
Greater London
City of London -20.0 -29.5

are complementary to policies already in hand. They demonstrate the importance that the Government attach to integrating development to sustain rural communities with the conservation of the countryside.

The Government remain committed to keeping its policies in the countryside under review and will take further action when and where necessary to secure the delivery of its objectives.

I am arranging for copies of "Action for the Countryside" to be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.