Statement from the Forestry Commission

January 2017


Latchmore Planning Application – Announcement by Forestry Commission (18/1/17)


During Verderers Court proceedings today, the Official Verderer announced that the HLS Board have decided not to progress our planning application for Latchmore Brook restoration in the New Forest within this HLS scheme following its refusal by the Planning Committee back in November.


We understand and respect the decision taken by the HLS Board to focus their future funding on a range of projects that will build on the success of completed conservation and restoration work across the New Forest.

Obviously we are disappointed that the hard work of many people, over several years to develop and communicate evidence-based plans, including making adjustments to proposals in light of concerns raised, will not be taken forward at this time.

We’ll now reflect on the impact of the decision on the threatened wetlands at Latchmore Brook and how we, along with other public bodies, will further our duty to enhance the special features of this nationally important Site of Special Scientific Interest and to meet Government targets for improvement of biodiversity.  The Forestry Commission, as a land manager of SSSIs nationally, has one of the best records of achieving its targets for moving these sites into favourable condition.


We are pleased that annual monitoring to measure change at the sites of most concern will continue under the remaining period of the HLS agreement. The Forestry Commission remains deeply committed to maintaining and restoring threatened areas of the New Forest.


I would like to thank many of you that supported our plans to restore Latchmore Brook and share our commitment to protect the Forest for the future.


Sent on behalf of Bruce Rothnie, Deputy Surveyor for the New Forest.