Defra launches Tree Health Pilot: Find out more

06 September 2021


The Agricultural Transition Plan, published by government last November, committed to help reduce the impact of tree pests and diseases to protect our trees, woodland and forests. On 31 August Defra launched the Tree Health Pilot (THP).

The THP aims to reduce the impact of tree pests and diseases and was a commitment in the 2020 Agricultural Transition Plan (ATP).

The THP is a small-scale pilot, offering funding to land managers and owners of small woodland, farmers with trees and those with trees outside woodland, to help combat several tree pests and disease.

The THP has been designed to test new stackable Tree Health grant options within pilot areas, for both group and individual applications.

Some funding is avaiable

Where eligible, funding is available for felling and chemical killing considered uneconomical without support, for capital items for improving biosecurity and improving access in hard-to-reach areas.

It also includes funding for restocking and maintenance of trees following felling.

The Pilot will work alongside the existing Countryside Stewardship Woodland Tree Health grants, which will continue to be available until 2024. The learning from the pilot will help to inform the design of the full scheme replacing Countryside Stewardship (CS) schemes in 2024.

Open for applications

The THP is open for applications now and is open all year round. The pilot is small scale, aiming to secure 100 agreements in three years (though this figure includes larger group applications to the number of individuals is likely to exceed 100).

The pilot is for people who manage specific trees or woodlands affected by specific pests and diseases in the following regions of England:

  • North West, primarily targeting Arnside and Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and the Lake District National Park
  • West Midlands, primarily targeting the Malvern Hills AONB and Shropshire Hills AONB
  • London 
  • South East, primarily targeting Kent and East Sussex

For more information visit the Tree Health Pilot Scheme pages on the Goverment tree health pilot page on GOV.UK. 


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