We celebrated many big victories this year in our mission to accelerate a transition to wild moors by taking our campaigns to boardrooms and parliaments to persuade policymakers and industry leaders to make important changes for nature and the climate. Here’s a quick recap of some of the results which led to major changes across the UK’s uplands in 2022:

1. Moorland buyouts for nature restoration are on the rise

In the biggest sign that times are changing, a whole host of new landowners – including Durham Wildlife Trust, Aviva, the community of Langholm and the Scottish government – have bought now former grouse moors to restore them for climate and nature objectives.

2. Scotland moves forward with grouse moor licensing

After a massive push from wildlife and environmental protection organisations, lead by the Revive coalition and RSPB, the Scottish government launched its long-awaited consultation on licensing grouse moors to help tackle wildlife persecution and environmental damage north of the border. The now completed consultation is a key move towards introducing licensing legislation, which is expected to progress in the new year.

3. Opposition parties unite behind grouse moor licensing in England

After hearing from Wild Moors, the Liberal Democrats joined Labour, the SNP and Green Party in supporting the introduction of grouse moor licensing in England.

4. Snares banned in Wales

It will become illegal for snares – which are set to catch foxes on the nation’s grouse moors – to be used anywhere in Wales under new legislation put forward by officials in the Senedd. Following pressure to match this ground-breaking move, Scotland’s policy makers are considering a recommendation from the government’s animal welfare advisors to implement a ban and Westminster will debate the issue in January.

5. Scottish Water phases out burning of peat moors

Shortly after hearing from Wild Moors, Scottish Water announced that it would be phasing out the use of burning – which damages peatlands – on its moors. Our work has resulted in a complete end to the use of the damaging practice on moorland owned by water companies across the UK.

6. National Trust tightens up the rules on grouse shooting

Major Peak District landowner the National Trust pledged to end the use of burning, medicated grit and trapping and snaring to increase game bird numbers by its shooting tenants. The move forms part of its High Peak Vision which aims to restore habitats and wildlife across the landscape to deliver big benefits for nature, the climate and people.

7. Denton Park Estate unveils ambitious rewilding plans

Following ending grouse shooting in 2018 after lobbying by Wild Moors, the Denton Park Estate in North Yorkshire has unveiled ambitious plans to rewild its land. The initiative will see peatland rewetted, native woodland expanded and a home provided to a range of wildlife from brown hares to hen harriers.