Entry Level Stewardship (ELS) Handbook 2013 (NE349)
ED2 Take out of cultivation archaeological features currently on cultivated land 460 points per ha


A barrow showing as a crop mark

A prehistoric enclosure overlain by medieval ridge and furrow

This option is available on cultivated land and on temporary grass leys that are re-sown at least once every five years. Land that is being managed under this option in an existing ELS agreement may stay in this option in a renewed agreement, provided that there has been continuity of management and that there has been no cultivation.

For this option, you must comply with the following:

  • Take archaeological features out of cultivation.
  • Choose a boundary that encompasses the feature and provides a sensible and practical field division where necessary. This may be on the whole or part of the field where the archaeological feature is located, depending on what is practical on your farm.
  • The area can be sown or left to regenerate and you must then carry out the following management:
    • Do not plough or cultivate. Re-seeding is only allowed by slot-seeding into the sward (without destruction of the existing sward).
    • Manage the area as permanent grassland, by grazing or mowing.
    • Maintain a continuous grass sward and do not allow bare patches of soil to develop (for example, by considering carefully the regular routing and rotation of stock movements, and gathering points such as water troughs).
    • Do not supplementary feed, or site water troughs, on or next to the archaeological feature.
    • Prevent scrub development.
    • Minimise the use of heavy vehicles on the feature, particularly in wet weather, to prevent damage caused by wheel rutting and compaction.
    • Do not tip or dump any material on the feature.
    • Avoid obvious earthworks, if you are harrowing or rolling.
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