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Medway Valley Countryside Partnership

Delivering the Medway Catchment Giant Hogweed and Invasive Flora Control Project

Medway Valley Countryside Partnership (MVCP) is one of several Countryside Management Partnerships (CMP's) in Kent. MVCP specifically delivers the Giant Hogweed and Invasive Non Native Plant Project in the area and leads on this for the CMP's. The project was officially started over 10 years ago to tackle Giant Hogweed hotspots but it has grown since its inception and is now delivered on a catchment scale covering almost 200km of riparian habitat in the Medway Catchment and on the River Cray in the London Borough of Bexley.

In 2014 approximately 9000 Giant Hogweed plants were recorded and treated across the area as part of this project. In addition the project targets Water Fern, Floating Pennywort, some isolated areas of Himalayan balsam and riparian Japanese knotweed.

Since it is a catchment wide project it allows for better catchment security and so when additional problems arise they can be addressed.

The project works in partnership with local landowners, giving them the opportunity to easily meet their responsibilities with regards to plant control. In addition the project aims to raise awareness of INNS issues and delivers a number of training sessions and awareness raising events each year. In 2015 these events will include biosecurity information.

All the invasive plants in the area (with the exception of Balsam) are logged on GPS and detailed ArcGIS maps are produced each year, thus monitoring the reduction of these plants over a long period of time.

In addition to the Invasive Species Control Project, MVCP and the CMP's collectively do a whole variety of work to enhance, protect and conserve the natural environment and local green spaces whilst working in partnership with local communities and landowners.