1. ITV Report

Cow power in Sutton

The cows are being drafted in to keep the grass in Sutton in check Photo: Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA Archive

Sutton Council is swapping lawnmowers for grazing cattle to keep the grass in check.

A crack team of Sussex cattle are being drafted in to look after the rare chalk grasslands of Roundshaw Downs.

Ditching machinery will save the council money by reducing mowing by up to £2000 a year.

The cows will be looked after by welfare experts from the Heritage Lottery Funded Old Surrey Downs Project and will live in a secure enclosure, which members of the public and dog walkers will be able to use.

It's hoped the scheme will give wildlife living on the grasslands extra help by increasing the number of wildflowers and insects and helping to protect ground-nesting birds like skylarks.

The cattle will keep weeds, shrubs and other hardy plants in check.