It’s rare for me to work for private individuals and even rarer for me to do a water vole survey. But this was quite a nice one to do – just a small job surveying a brook which formed part of the edge of a private landholding. The landowners had noted that the bank of the brook seemed to be eroding and had commissioned advice on erosion control measures they could implement to prevent their garden falling away into the brook. In places the brook bank was quite close to the house, too, so I understood how keen they were to get this sorted!
Anyone who has ever worked on an Environmental Statement for an outline application knows that they tend to be a bit, well, vague. Usually, the local authority will let this ride because they know they can get all the detail they need at the reserved matters or detailed application stage. The flip side of this is that it’s not OK to just recycle the outline ES at the detailed application stage. One really does need to actually do it properly – unfortunately, sometimes this seems to pass the client by and they may need some persuading to invest in a proper ecological impact assessment. That’s what happened with this project. Continue reading
Whilst at WYG, I was heavily involved in this project. My role was to co-ordinate and supervise non-avian ecological surveys and reporting including:
- Phase 1 habitat survey
- NVC survey
- great crested newt survey
- otter and water vole survey
- badger survey
- dormouse survey
I led survey teams for all of the above surveys except dormouse.
After I left WYG, the ecological surveys and reports I co-ordinated were used to inform the Environmental Statement for the scheme. The project is currently with the Infrastructure Planning Committee and further information can be found on the developer’s website.
I was involved with this project in its early stages, when it was referred to as Cilfaesty Hill wind farm. Subsequently, the developers investigated additional areas of land, removing Cilfaesty Hill from the proposals and the final scheme name was changed to reflect this.
I undertook detailed Phase 1 habitat survey, NVC survey and mammal survey of the site to inform the design process. I also participated in white-clawed crayfish survey and assessed the site’s potential to support uncommon bryophyte species.
A planning application for the scheme was submitted in January 2012 and further information can be found on the developer’s website.
I provided a range of ecological surveys and advice in relation to meeting planning conditions for a marina development incorporating a pub/restaurant, shops and small residential scheme. Ecological issues considered included bats, Japanese knotweed, nesting birds, white-clawed crayfish and floating water-plantain. I also provided a watching brief for water vole during construction of the marina, which is now open.