Defra has opened round two of the Local Authority Treescapes Fund (LATF) to increase tree planting and natural regeneration in non-woodland areas. The fund is part of the government’s Nature for Climate Fund and will directly contribute to achieving its ambitious tree planting targets. £5.4 million will be available through LATF this year (2022/23) for planting trees outside woodlands. It is expected that up to 100 grants worth £50,000 to £300,000 will be available for local authorities, working together with community groups, volunteers and NGOs.
The LATF provides funding for the establishment of trees in non-woodland settings. These may include parks, riparian zones, copses and shelterbelts, as well as green lanes, small linear woodlands alongside roads and footpaths, and vacant and disused community spaces. Planting and protecting new trees that are intended to grow into mature standards within hedgerows is also permitted, though the creation of new hedgerows is not. Trees in these settings are particularly valuable as they can provide the greatest levels of benefit to ecosystems and society, such as carbon absorption, flood protection and support for biodiversity, as well as connecting fragmented habitats through wildlife corridors.
The fund will help the nation build back greener from the pandemic and will target landscapes that have been neglected in the past, ecologically damaged or affected by tree diseases like ash dieback – with ash being the most common species of tree found in non-woodland locations.
The LATF first opened in 2021 to fund an increase in non-woodland tree planting across our landscapes. Round one supported the planting and maintenance of 260,000 trees outside of woodlands, with 139 local authorities awarded a share of a £4.4 million pot across 42 projects.
Find out more about the scheme and how to apply on GOV.UK website. The deadline for applications is 31 May 2022.