As part of the HLS Scheme’s wetland restoration work across the Forest, the Forestry Commission proposed to restore Latchmore Brook, near Hyde, back to its natural meandering course.

This was because the stream was artificially deepened and widened in the early 20th century and has lost its natural connectivity with its floodplain. This is causing increased erosion within the mire systems, degradation of wet heath and grassland habitats, and limited seasonal flooding of the surrounding grassland and woodland habitats. This inconsistent interaction with the floodplain means that adjacent habitats are being negatively affected.

In November 2016 the planning application to restore Latchmore Brook was refused by the New Forest National Park Authority.

This was a disappointing outcome as the project had been strongly commended by all key consultees. We’d like to thank Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, New Forest Association, RSPB and the Commoners’ Defence Association for their support.

We are not progressing with these plans to restore Latchmore Brook but remain committed to delivering our wetland restoration schemes elsewhere to bring long term benefits to the Forest.

Condition of Latchmore Brook in 360 degrees