Developers ordered to do more to protect wildlife

Developers have been ordered to do more to protect Britain’s wildlife, with the government setting out expectations on how specific species can be safeguarded.

This includes the use of ‘hedgehog highways’, whereby hedgehogs can roam through back gardens to seek food and habitat to nest, and hollow swift bricks, which allow birds to nest safely in the walls of new-build homes.

Housebuilders should now think about the long-term impact of developments on the local ecosystem, both during and after construction, according to communities secretary James Brokenshire MP.

“Building the new homes this country needs must not come at the detriment of our natural heritage.

“It’s right that as we deliver houses for people, we must also provide homes for wildlife too — whether that’s for hedgehogs, frogs, newts or birds.

“The public have told us that protecting wildlife is important to them — so my message to housebuilders is to harness this support and get building in a way that protects the environment for the next generation.”

The initiative includes greater emphasis on new ways to allow nature to thrive, such as drainage areas to create attractive wetlands for birds and amphibians.

Brokenshire has also called for developers to plant more trees and green meadows.

This builds on the government’s planning rulebook, which was adopted last year, whereby developers have to ensure space for wildlife is provided in addition to new homes.

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