Dales is free from dieback

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AFTER an extensive woodland survey, experts can confirm that the Derbyshire Dales is free from the devastating Ash dieback disease – for now.

If the Chalara fungus were to strike the Dales, it would change the landscape irreversibly and could effect wildlife in the area too.

Jane Chapman, head of environment and economy for the Peak District National Park, said: “I’m very pleased that our area remains free from Ash dieback. We’ll have to stay vigilant, though, and we are in the process of drawing up an action plan for the area.”

More details of the authority’s plan will be revealed on Monday.

Following an unprecedented survey of Britain’s established woodland – in advance of a government summit yesterday – further cases of Ash dieback have been confirmed in Sussex, Berkshire, Bedfordshire, Lincolnshire, Yorkshire and Northumberland.

The disease has now been confirmed in 115 sites across the country now including 15 nurseries, 39 planting sites and 61 locations in the wider environment.