Britain’s Prince Charles fights weed
Britain’s Prince Charles has fought to reduce the spread of a garden weed.
The 67-year-old royal asked his secretary to pen a number of letters to Natural England, insisting he wanted to know “what exactly [they] are able to do to tackle the spread of injurious weeds such as ragwort”.
In a letter sent last August to the chairman of Natural England Andrew Sells, the Prince’s assistant private secretary Michael Whitehead writes: “[The Prince] is particularly concerned about the spread of ragwort … [and] has asked me to see what can be done to address it, and to encourage farmers and smallholders, in addition to larger companies, to be more proactive in tackling the problem.”
He received a reply from Mr Sells, insisting “there [was] no evidence that it is invading new habitats.”
But the Prince was unhappy with the response and fired a letter back shortly after, only to soon be told by Mr Sells that something could actually be done.
In a letter dated October 2015, he wrote back to the heir to the throne: “I have looked into the problem further and I feel there is more that Natural England staff can do to be proactive … [There will be] new training and awareness.
“Each year there is a Weed Act meeting organised by Defra [the Department for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs]. We play a key role in that meeting, and will look to steer the agenda to get more emphasis on the better management of the highways and railway embankments to control ragwort.
“I hope that the contributions to the ragwort issue set out above meet with the approval of His Royal Highness and I will ensure that work to put these into place begins immediately.”