Richard Stanbury manages 400 acres of one of the world’s rarest habitats - culm grasslands – with his herd of traditional breed North Devon cattle. This wet grassland habitat supports a huge diversity of wildlife, from the very rare marsh fritillary butterfly to wetland birds like snipe. It is found only in North Devon and North Cornwall, where it once covered huge tracts of land but now is reduced to fragmented sites, most of which are just a few acres in size. This makes the scale of culm grassland under Richard’s management particularly important, and the sensitive grazing of the site crucial to ensure it’s health and resilience as weather patterns change.
Alongside his culm grassland management, Richard is part of a group of pioneering and innovative regenerative farmers trialing different techniques to restore and build healthy soils, including the use of highly diverse cover crops and mob grazing across diverse pastures.