THERE have been further findings of a new tree disease in the UK less than 24 hours after fresh outbreaks were confirmed in a different part of the country. 

Forestry Commission (FC) chiefs have revealed Phytophthora pluvialis has spread to additional areas within Devon, Cornwall and Cumbria, which were first hit by the pathogen last year. 

Discovered following routine plant health surveillance activities, the disease was found to have made its way through the stricken counties. FC officials say they will now enforce extended demarcated areas from January 27 in a bid to slow P. pluvialis' spread. The movement of any wood, isolated bark and tree will be prohibited in the zones from that date. 

READ MORE: Phytophthora pluvialis: Further findings of new tree disease confirmed in Wales

The revelation comes less than a day after National Resource Wales (NRW) bosses had confirmed the disease was discovered on two additional sites in the country, a month on from it first being found. 

Nicola Spence, the UK Chief Plant Health Officer, said: “We are continuing to take swift and robust action against the findings of Phytophthora pluvialis, as part of our well-established biosecurity protocol used for tree pests and diseases.

“I urge all sectors to support efforts to tackle this pathogen by checking the health of western hemlock and Douglas-fir trees. Key symptoms to look for are lesions on the stem, branch or roots.

"Any sightings should be reported to the Forestry Commission via its TreeAlert online portal.”

Forestry Journal: The extended demarcated zone in Cumbria The extended demarcated zone in Cumbria

P. pluvialis is a fungus-like pathogen known to affect a variety of trees including western hemlock, tanoak, pine (Pinus radiata, Pinus patula and Pinus strobus) and Douglas-fir.

It was discovered in a woodland in Cornwall in September 2021, where it was found to be affecting mature western hemlock and Douglas-fir trees.

This was the first time it had been recorded in Europe. It has since spread to every part of mainland Britain. 

This is a breaking news story. More follows.