Local Nature Partnership

Local Nature Partnership

Green-winged orchids (c) Charlotte Hussey

What is the Local Nature Partnership?

The Local Nature Partnership (LNP) brings together a range of partners who want to secure a sustainable and successful future for Hertfordshire’s countryside.

Hertfordshire has one of the highest population densities of any county at over 1.1 million people. Its rural countryside is dominated by intensive arable farming. The natural environment faces many challenges; remaining habitats are now small and highly fragmented.

The LNP's role is to ensure that the county’s natural environment is fully considered and valued in local decision-making and that it delivers benefits for wildlife, people, landscapes and the local economy.

The LNP’s priorities and ambitions

• Healthy and resilient ecological networks - restored and connected habitats across the whole county, creating resilient wildlife populations and allowing wildlife to adapt to climate change and other pressures

• Health and wellbeing through the natural environment - healthy people enjoying a greater quality of life and wellbeing through sustainable access to and enjoyment of their natural environment

• Sustainable economic growth through the natural environment - a thriving Hertfordshire economy supported by and which values the natural environment

• Water for people and wildlife - Sufficient water for people, wildlife and economic growth

The LNP will influence plans being developed in the county, for example by the Local Enterprise Partnership and the Health and Wellbeing Board. It will endorse and support projects delivered by partners that contribute towards its priorities and it will deliver some projects directly.

How does it work and how is it funded?

A strategic plan has been agreed which provides a framework for the LNP’s annual work plan. The annual work plan outlines the tasks which the partnership will deliver in order to achieve its objectives.

The LNP does not receive any central government funding to support its activities but has the support of a part-time coordinator until the end of February 2016, funded by the Hertfordshire Sustainability Forum. Partners provide in-kind support, contributing time and skills to tasks and projects. Funding will be required for other projects and the LNP will look for funding opportunities.

Who’s involved?

The LNP consists of a board, an officer support group and a county-wide forum of stakeholders.

The board membership is as follows:

LNP Board Members:

Councillor David Andrews, Hertfordshire County Council (Chair)
Councillor John Gardner, Stevenage Borough Council (Vice Chair)
Councillor Derrick Ashely, Hertfordshire County Council
Lesley Davies, Hertfordshire & Middlesex Wildlife Trust
Jim McManus, Hertfordshire Health and Wellbeing Board
Julie Nunn, Environment Agency
Rob Wise, National Farmers’ Union

The officer support group draws on a wide range of organisations with an interest in conserving and enhancing our natural environment and is chaired by the Trust’s Head of Living Landscapes, Dr Tom Day.

There are 48 Local Nature Partnerships across the country. LNPs were a key commitment in the government’s 2011 Natural Environment White Paper.