HUF HAUS designs lighting around bat advice

Friday, December 21st, 2012

Following input to a project for Huf Haus (involving a habitat and species scoping survey and assessment for roosting and foraging bats to be present) at site close to a river in Surrey, our bat ecologist Dr. Sarah Yarwood-Lovett was asked to provide a specific response to the proposed lighting scheme.

We pride ourselves on our ‘aftercare’ service for clients and Sarah was able to provide a detailed and prompt response on the lighting levels and anticipated light spill into habitats that bats might use.

The basis for concerns regarding lighting is that some bat species can be deterred from using roosting and foraging habitats where lighting is introduced. Sarah said, “Some species, such as Daubenton’s bat, which favour foraging along water bodies, are especially sensitive to light pollution”.

Huf haus were aware of this issue, following our original involvement in the project, and had followed our preliminary advice very carefully.

As a result, the lighting proposals had been thoughtfully and effectively designed so that lighting needed for safety and security was incorporated, but without spilling into habitats that bats may be using. Even better, the lighting to showcase the architectural qualities of the Huf Haus were designed to illuminate the facades of the building without causing lighting impacts to bats. The end result will hopefully be an impressive scheme with  low impact on the adjacent habitat.

Huf Haus achieved this through choosing a combination of different lighting suited to the purpose required. This included low-height lighting along pedestrian routes, lamps with back-guards to prevent lighting spilling onto nearby tree lines, bright but directional lights to wash the building elevations only and generally using lighting below the threshold recommended in guidance produced by the Bat Conservation Trust.

The scheme could therefore be readily assessed with no impacts needing to be addressed and Sarah was able to produce a letter to accompany the planning application to this effect.

Jack was delighted with Sarah’s response, saying “Thanks for sending this over to me so quickly; it’s exactly what we needed.”

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