Natural England Stewardship Starts

Natural England Stewardship Starts

20 January 2021

Work begins on £35,000 Countryside Stewardship project at Chester House Estate

The Chester House Estate near Irchester has been awarded £35,000 by Countryside Stewardship to clear scrub land and create access with stunning views across the estate.

Money is awarded by the Government as an incentive to farmers and land managers to look after and improve the environment. The work is being carried out by Gary Akehurst, Facilities Supervisor, and is expected to be finished in the spring and will involve educational and community incentives.

Gary said: “We’re creating a new entrance to the estate from Claudius Way and are clearing all the scrub from the land between the entrance and the house.

“It means that visitors will be able to walk along the ridge with uninterrupted views of the River Nene and the House, which is going to look stunning.”

Other work being carried out as part of the Countryside Stewardship includes new fencing to open up wider areas of the site and creating grazing lands for farm animals which will have a positive impact on the sustainability of the site. We are also working with Moulton College to provide practical experience for their land management courses, such as hedge laying. Gary is one of three new appointments at the Estate and has previously worked for the Government and at a visitor attraction based in Cambridgeshire.

He said: “We’re about halfway through clearing the scrub now and we’re already beginning to see nature returning to the area. Looking out at the view across towards Wellingborough is a real highlight.”

Chester House Business Manager, Jack Pishhorn, added: “We’ve outlined grand plans for the site and the Countryside Stewardship money has been absolutely crucial in allowing us to visualise how the Estate will look when we reopen during 2021. It’s going to be an incredible asset to the community and wider area.”