River Aire Catchment Project

Frequently asked questions

What natural flood management options are available to landowners?

Tree planting, hedgerow planting, soil aeration, buffer strips.


Will I have to pay for anything?

We aim to provide fully-funded natural flood management projects on private land.


What’s the catch, what’s in it for you?

The White Rose Forest and several councils will benefit from tree planting targets and increased canopy cover, while communities downstream, Leeds Council and the Environment Agency will benefit from reduced instances of flooding.


Is there any maintenance?

Some tree-related projects will include funding for maintenance. However maintenance for all other natural flood management measures will be the responsibility of the landowner.


I’m already the beneficiary of existing schemes, how would participation in this affect me?

Discuss your current situation with your landowner engagement partner and we will consider all of this when exploring funding options and help you figure out the best solutions.


What is the qualifying criteria for taking part?

The landowner (or tenant with the landowners’ permission) must live within the River Aire catchment. The land must not be contaminated and you must be prepared to sign an agreement to authorise the work.


Will the person I deal with from the outset be the person who delivers the work?

In some cases, yes. Even if they don’t deliver the project, they may be involved in the supervision of it.


I have land elsewhere; will this offer be available in other catchments?

The scheme in the River Aire catchment is a pilot project. Once we demonstrate the universal benefits of this pioneering model, by having willing and satisfied landowners participating in the scheme, we hope to be able to expand and replicate the concept in other catchments.


How long will it take?

Non-tree related projects can be generally delivered in less than three months for normal projects, rising to six months for more complex projects. Tree planting is seasonal and these types of projects can be quite complex too. Although we will complete all the necessary paperwork and project delivery on your behalf, external factors might dictate the speed at which your project progresses.


What if there’s a better option for me?

This scheme is landowner-led. You tell us what you would like to achieve. We have access to all funding mechanisms, so we will ensure we find the right one that aligns with your aspirations and you decide if it’s a good fit for you.


Can I refer a family member, colleague, neighbour etc.?

This scheme is operating specifically for landowners within the Aire catchment. If you know of landowners with suitable land, who might be interested in participating, they can contact us at whiteroseforest@kirklees.gov.uk. Alternatively discuss this with your landowner engagement partner.


Why might I have to wait so long for tree planting?

Tree planting is seasonal so there is a window in which planting can take place, typically between November and March. There may also be a delay to the start depending on the complexity or the need for regulatory requirements to be met prior to planning in the planting.


What if I change my mind?

At the preliminary engagement stage, you will be required to sign an agreement to demonstrate a genuine willingness for us to progress developing the detail of your concept project. At that stage we would begin to explore the schemes and funding that best match your project and complete the paperwork. Although not legally binding we would encourage landowners to only agree if they have a genuine intention to progress the project through to completion.