Food not forests

SIR – John Davis (Herts Advertiser, February 18) makes a strong case against taking farmland at Sandridge out of production in favour of planting trees. He suggests leaving half of it in agricultural production. Why only half of it? The arguments that app

SIR - John Davis (Herts Advertiser, February 18) makes a strong case against taking farmland at Sandridge out of production in favour of planting trees.

He suggests leaving half of it in agricultural production. Why only half of it? The arguments that apply to one half apply equally to the other.

Arable land is a valuable capital asset built up over many generations and is also an important environment for wildlife.

To lose even the smallest amount of it is to play into the hands of international agribusiness. I strongly believe that we should plant more trees wherever it is appropriate to do so, but we need to retain all the good agricultural land we can if future generations are to be well supplied with locally-sourced food after the era of cheap energy has become a distant memory.


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There is plenty of land of marginal agricultural value on which to plant trees.

To those who would say yes, but we wouldn't get our wonderful Heartwood Forest, I would argue that Hertfordshire is relatively well-endowed with attractive woodlands open to the public, most of them under-visited.

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ALAN JACKSON

Lambourn Gardens, Harpenden

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