RICHMOND — Ice House Hill Farm, an iconic area known for its natural scenic beauty, has been forever protected.
Berkshire Natural Resources Council and the farm's owners reached a deal to place the farm into the Massachusetts Conservation Restriction program, according to a release from the council.
The farm, home to a herd of Hereford cattle, was once part of the larger Malnati Farm holdings, most of which were previously placed into conservation, the release stated.
“Preserving Ice House Hill Farm is important to ensure that local agriculture remains a strong and significant part of Berkshire culture,” said BNRC President Jenny Hansell. “It has timeless views, rich habitat, and a special place in the hearts of many people who love Richmond and the region."
A conservation restriction is a legally enforceable agreement that secures permanent protection of specific conservation values while allowing for limited land uses, such as farming, which are not detrimental to land preservation, the release stated.
BNRC is responsible for monitoring the conservation restriction on an annual basis.
Richmond Land Trust, which has a long history of collaboration with BNRC, first raised the possibility of a permanent conservation with the landowners, then inviting BNRC to lead the project to completion.
“This granting of a conservation restriction to BNRC ensures that generations who follow us will continue to enjoy the farm’s scenic vistas that many in Richmond, and beyond, value so much,” said land trust President Chris Magee.