Pinewoods Conservation Group met with Yorkshire Water last week to discuss grass cutting at Harlow Moor Water Treatment Works. The meeting was also attended by Harrogate District Bio Diversity Action Group (HDBAG) and Rebecca Burnett from the office of Andrew Jones MP after approached by local residents around the issue.
The land, adjacent to Nursery Lane off Otley Road, is normally currently cut 7 times a year that was destroying an environment for insects and other wildlife. Concern had been raised by several local people about the timing of Yorkshire Water cutting back the long grass in the field – just as the bees and other wildlife were enjoying the clover at the height of the summer.
The meeting discussed the operational access and health & safety issues for the site balancing the importance of grasslands and scrub areas to wildlife. After a site visit it was agreed to run a pilot project in 2014 to only mow the front area of the field where access is needed. A further wide strip will now be left to return to nature resulting in approximately another 2000 square meters of habitat being left to nature.