Restoring woodlands affected by ash dieback
Ash dieback is a devastating disease threatening veteran trees and woodlands.
Changing weather patterns caused by climate change mean we're seeing the worst effects of ash dieback and other diseases at the places in our care. We need your help to replace lost trees.
Historic trees and beautiful woodland, which have inspired the likes of writer Beatrix Potter and landscape painter John Constable, face extinction. Ash dieback is driven by the climate crisis. Mild, wet winters create ideal conditions for disease and pests to spread. Prolonged drought, flooding and high temperatures also mean that the trees are likely to be stressed and more vulnerable to disease.
The eventual loss of the native ash tree will have a devastating impact on wildlife and biodiversity. We're calling for the issue to be written into the government’s England Tree Strategy, which sets out national commitments around tree planting and woodland creation.
News update December 2021: thousands of trees to be felled
Large areas of woodland will be lost this winter because of pathogen tree diseases.
At least 30,000 ash trees are expected to be felled this at a cost of £3m (up from £2m last year) because of ash dieback.
Tens of thousands of larch trees will also be felled across the Lake District after an outbreak of the disease Phytophthora ramorum. Urgent felling will take place at several sites with Holme Wood among the worst affected by the disease.
Woodlands in the South Lakes have been badly hit, including Tarn Hows and Coniston. Wasdale, Langdale, and Crummock have also been affected.
A new disease Phytophthora pluvialis (discovered in Cornwall) and an outbreak of the eight-toothed spruce bark beetle in the south-east of England have also raised concerns.
As part of our ambition to plant and establish 20m trees by 2030, we're planting more climate-resilient plants and creating woodlands that have a diverse range of species in them.
Pictured left: Ash trees being felled at Hardcastle Crags, West Yorkshire
" Ash trees like those at Beatrix Potter’s Troutbeck Park Farm are some of our most culturally significant trees and have stood for hundreds of years but will now be lost for ever. "