Environmentalists are calling for wildflower meadows and grassland to be protected after learning about how much has been lost in Hertfordshire within the last 100 years.

They want Three Rivers District Council to lead the way by reducing the amount of grass it mows which they say will increase biodiversity across the area.

Rosi Jordon, who is from environmental community group Sustainable Three Rivers, says she was "horrified" to learn 97 per cent of "species rich grassland" in Hertfordshire has been lost since the 1930s.

She said: "Grassland is one of the most unique habitats for wildlife and pollinators and we were horrified to learn how much species grassland we have lost.

"We would like the council to promote a 'no-mow' policy because it will benefit insects, birds, shrews, bats, and the wider environment."

The council has an opportunity to get behind the idea when a motion is presented to its leisure, environment, and community committee at a meeting this evening (November 24).

Gade Valley councillor Alex Michaels wants the council to stop mowing up to 50 per cent of grassland it owns and manages and replace this with hay meadow management.

The Independent representative says this would not apply to areas such as playgrounds, football pitches, and verges.

Cllr Michaels says he has received plenty of community support for his motion including from Sustainable Three Rivers, which wants grasslands and meadows to be able to "grow and thrive".

Ms Jordon, a retired teacher and grandmother, said: "We want to be proud to live in Three Rivers. We understand the council can't do the no-mow everywhere but it would be great to think we could have a much larger percentage of grass that is allowed to grow.

"We want to see this happening next spring because every second counts. The council often tells us we have the best recycling rates in the district but we'd like to see Three Rivers have the best biodiversity rates as well.

"Let's have Three Rivers at the forefront of this."

In April, the council announced it would be reducing grass cutting at several locations around Three Rivers as part of a pilot project to increase biodiversity.

The results of the project would reportedly be fed into a county-wide audit in the summer which aims to better understand the rich biodiversity across Hertfordshire.