The Ecology Consultancy provided ecological survey and design services to help transform Wilmington Way, a tired 1960s housing estate into a modern, sustainable housing development scheme in Haywards Heath, East Sussex.
A preliminary ecological appraisal (PEA) and protected species assessment was carried out with bat emergence and activity surveys. This was to be followed by a Code for Sustainable Homes (CfSH) Assessment, detailed bird and bat box specifications and an ecological management plan once the development had received planning permission.
We worked with the District Council Ecologist to specify a range of bird nesting and bat roosting boxes for the following locations:
• Mature trees on the edge of the adjacent Scrase Valley Local Nature Reserve (LNR) and area of ancient woodland
• Extra heavy standard specimen trees with heights greater than four meters
• Suitable positions on buildings
In total, 40 bird boxes including Schwegler models to benefit a range of species such as blue-tits, robins, house sparrows, wrens and swifts, were specified. Approximately 30 bat boxes to provide both summer and winter roost opportunities for the range of bat species known to use the nearby LNR, were also specified.
For the CfSH, we made recommendations for the inclusion of native hedgerows and the retention and protection of trees and ancient woodland. This included advice on a buffer zone and use of appropriate landscape planting. Log piles to benefit invertebrates and common species of reptiles were also specified for the woodland edge.
Our input helped to achieve Planning Permission, Code Level 3