Badger Gill

Some pesky rabbits took me to Badger Gill in Bransdale. An intake field for one of the National Trust’s tenant farmers was being made rabbit proof. Looking upstream from the limit of Trust property is a scene of devastation. Bransdale Forest, comprised of various pockets of trees scattered throughout the dale, was planted in the 1950s and 60s for timber production and extraction began in 2006. Because of the soil quality, the steepness of the terrain and access, Forestry England is not planning to replant with commercial forestry. Instead, the aim is to allow natural regeneration with a mosaic of broadleaf and conifer trees and open ground, a succession that will be monitored over a timetable of fifty years. In the meantime, the gill is scarred. If you look at the Ordnance Survey map it can be seen that Bransdale Forest is not Open Access Land. This is because the land is held on a long term lease by Forestry England from the Nawton Towers Estate and as such were excluded from being designated as Open Access Land.
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