South Pennines grouse moor has described an attempt by Natural England to ban heather burning on the estate?s blanket bog as ?unlawful, unfair, irrational and discriminatory?.

The High Court in Leeds has ordered a full judicial review later this month of the proposed ban, which the Walshaw Moor Estate says is a threat to employment, tourism and sustainable land management, and could put grouse moor management at risk.

The estate?s solicitor, Matthew Howarth, said: ?The case could have very serious consequences for both the ownership and management of grouse moors. Natural England has supported heather burning for many years and now seems to be doing a very worrying and inexplicable U-turn.

?Walshaw Moor Estate is wholly committed to responsible land management practices and is looking for fairness from Natural England. So far, fairness has been sadly absent in their actions and we look forward to challenging them through the judicial review process.?

The rest of this article appears in the 8th February issue of Shooting Times.

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