THE Forestry Commission has this week opened a tree planting grant scheme – the England Woodland Creation Offer.

The new grant scheme, designed for landowners and farmers, aims to support the creation of a range of woodland types and sizes.

Mark Bridgeman, President of the Country Land & Business Association (CLA), welcomed the scheme and said: “Payments for woodland creation under the EWCO are significantly better than previous schemes and the minimum application area has been reduced to 1 ha, which should increase interest in tree planting.

"Higher standard payments, with optional supplements for biodiversity, flood mitigation or access provision, makes woodland creation under the EWCO a more attractive option than before.

"It is well worth landowners looking into whether this new scheme can work for them.”