Most of the area is located on limestone. Shallow, stony soils mean that the area is classed as Grade 3 agricultural land-use class, with lower quality Grade 4 land alongside the river valleys where the ground is poorly drained and sloping.
The surrounding land is a mix of woodland to the north of the site, following the valley, and Grade 3 agricultural land around the remaining areas.
The estate has undertaken a natural capital assessment with the intention of identifying opportunities to increase natural capital value, along with reaching carbon neutral status by 2025. There are currently 334ha of plantation and 400ha of other woodland distributed over the 4856ha estate, of which 310ha are ancient woodlands. The estate intends to re-wild a large extent of its land, plant woodlands for biodiversity, and adapt woodland management to enhance biodiversity.
Strategic positioning of planting, woodlands and hedges will maximise the benefits to biodiversity, wildlife and conservation, as well as enhancement of the local environment. Fences will be erected to protect any new planting from browsing by deer, livestock or other animals. The mature trees present on the land provide excellent habitats for a variety of bats and raptors. The landscape proposals will help to enhance the vision splay along the valley and not obstruct from views towards the river, alongside providing screening of the A4260. The design will look to extend current planting to the north of the site, following the valley sides.