Cheviot Futures

United in a Changing Landscape

Windblown soil loss on Doddington following harvest of potato crop, October 2011

North Doddington windbreak feature

North Doddington, Wooler, Northumberland

One of the key issues for North Doddington, identified through the Farm Resilience Plan, is the loss of valuable soil resources through the effects of wind erosion. This is a particular problem through the central section of the farm, where the light sandy soils are not only more vulnerable to lift by wind, but also lend themselves towards the production of high value arable crops such as salad potatoes.

As well as the physical loss of land resource, this erosion of soils also present wider issues relating to the loss of nutrients bound up in that soil, and an increased risk of diffuse pollution as a result.

It is in the best interests of the farm business and the environment to seek to reduce losses of soil by wind erosion.

Cheviot Futures is working closely with the farm, local contractors and also Natural England and Catchment Sensitive Farming colleagues, to reinstate approximately 1.2km of hedgeline to act as a windbreak feature.
The feature, while termed a hedge, will be managed differently to hedges elsewhere, in order to encourage maximum effectiveness as a windbreak and to capture windblown soil material.

Work started in early October 2011 on this project, with an initial section planted up with the assistance of members of the local Whittingham scout group and also HRH Prince Seesio of the Kingdom of Lesotho, as part of a project looking at planting trees to reduce erosion in Lesotho - please see 'latest news' for more deatails on this exciting international link!