Country Land and Business Association tells Defra to ban ash imports

The Country Land and Business Association has called on the Government to ban all imports of ash plants and seeds with immediate effect to halt the spread of the ash tree disease Chalara fraxinea.

CLA President Harry Cotterell wrote to Environment Secretary Owen Paterson ago urging him to take action after the Forestry Commission confirmed that the disease is now in the UK.

Cotterell told Paterson that the loss of the ash species would be "devastating to both the ecology and landscape of our countryside".

He wrote: "The assertion that the disease is not yet in the wild is almost certainly because we haven’t been looking for it. The Forestry Commission and Forest Research are already stretched to breaking point dealing with Phytopthera Ramorum, Acute Oak Decline, Oak Processionary Moth and RedBand Needle Blight.

"The Government’s own Action Plan for Tree Health and Plant Biosecurity states that protecting the UK through import controls is a priority. If we are to have any chance of stopping the spread of this disease and eradicating it from the UK, the Government must bring in an immediate and compulsory ban on the import of all ash plants and seed."

The CLA president added: "There is no time for consultation or discussion, the speed at which this disease appears able to spread means this first measure must be taken immediately. There is no point trying to deal with the infection within the country unless there is an effective import ban in place preventing continued re-infection."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Horticulture careers - plugging the skills gap

Horticulture careers - plugging the skills gap

Bespoke apprenticeships and internal training are helping firms to get ahead in skills-shortage horticulture, says Rachel Anderson.

Business planning - managing insurance

Business planning - managing insurance

Follow these steps to ensure adequate cover and the best deal when reviewing your insurance, Neville Stein advises.

Are tree suppliers seeing the benefit of the health message of trees?

Are tree suppliers seeing the benefit of the health message of trees?

The message that health, the environment and business all benefit from trees is finally getting through, but are nurseries seeing an upturn? Sally Drury reports.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +


The Horticulture Week Business Awards is now open for entries

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs


Build your business with the latest public sector tenders covering landscape, arboriculture, grounds care, production and kit supplies. To receive the latest tenders weekly to your inbox sign up for our Tenders Tracker bulletin here.

HW Top UK Arboriculture Businesses

See our exclusive RANKING of arboriculture businesses by annual turnover. 


Find out more about the outstanding parks, gardens and arboricultural projects and teams that became our Custodian Award 2018 winners.

Jeremy Barrell On...

Jeremy Barrell

Tree consultant Jeremy Barrell reflects on the big issues in arboriculture.

Products & Kit Resources