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21st January 2021
We have welcomed the introduction of a District-level Licensing Scheme, by Natural England, which can potentially save years in the planning process by removing the need for on-site mitigation and translocation of great crested newts.
Many building projects have been significantly delayed over the years thanks to rural surveyors having to deal with great crested newts on the proposed building site. The traditional method of dealing with newts involves months (if not years) of surveys, gaining planning approval of your mitigation scheme, obtaining a Natural England licence, months of trapping and translocating and then expensive habitat creation.
Natural England has developed a ‘District-level Licensing Scheme’ (DLLS) in several parts of the country which removes the need for on-site mitigation and translocation. Instead of protecting each and every newt on-site (which the current system does), the DLLS allows the landowner to contribute a standardised payment towards a larger scheme elsewhere in the district or county which enables the existing population there to flourish.
Richard Corbett, Partner with Roger Parry & Partners said, “Whilst the importance of protecting vulnerable species should not be understated, the existing process is laborious and can add years onto building projects. We welcome this new scheme which has been introduced to Shropshire and parts of Cheshire as well as other specific parts of England. We hope the Welsh Government will take a similar approach across Wales in the near future.”
Landowners can apply to join a district level licensing scheme, to manage the local great crested newt population, if they are developing land in certain parts of England. Full details on the locations currently in the scheme can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/great-crested-newts-district-level-licensing-schemes
Our planning team are dedicated to keeping abreast of all the complex rules and technical requirements relating to planning policy and associated regulation. The team know the planning and development sector, its organisation, methods and standards and their planning professionals will advise and navigate clients through the rules and regulations connected with planning and building and monitor construction through to completion. Visit: www.rogerparry.net for more details.