The Project encourages farmers to return to more traditional pastoral farming which affords more protection for archaeology and enhances biodiversity. A key function of the Project is to help secure conservation farming subsidies known as Higher Level Stewardship schemes to make these changes financially viable. HLS schemes create a tailored plan of environmental improvements for each farm, focussing on targeted habitats and species of the greatest conservation concern. At its heart is the objective to restore areas of wet grassland for breeding waders on suitable fields on The Carrs.
Wetland restoration schemes are not always simple and often require farmers to adjust their management practices. The Project Officer’s role is to help interested farmers to work out what is possible and how to achieve it then guide them towards a successful stewardship application. Each new farm scheme can take several months to put together then several years to bring the plans to fruition, monitor progress and deal with teething troubles. The Project Officer acts as a central point for communication between the various farmers, local authorities, heritage and conservation agencies and drainage bodies concerned with the Wetland Project. Increasingly, engagement with local communities and countryside users is an important role and the website offers a key first point of contact for these non-specialists.
For a more comprehensive knowledge of the history and background of the project please read Natural History of the Project Area