06 March 2018
Council approves measures to protect birds' habitat
Fareham Borough Council has approved a new strategy which will help protect rare and important birds living on the Borough's coast.
Over 90,000 coastal birds fly from as far as Arctic Siberia to feed and roost for the winter on the Solent.
The Council's Executive Committee has agreed to implement the Definitive Solent Recreation Mitigation Strategy (SRMS) – which aims to reduce the impact on birds' habitat from new housing developments.
Under the strategy developers are required to make financial contributions depending on how many homes are planned. On average, this would be the equivalent of £564 per new home, an increase from £181 per new home under the previous strategy.
The developer contributions will be used to fund:
- A team of coastal rangers to advise people on how to avoid bird disturbance, liaise with landowners, host school visits etc.;
- Communications, marketing and education initiatives;
- Initiatives to encourage responsible dog walking;
- The preparation of codes of conduct for a variety of coastal activities;
- Site-specific projects to help manage recreation at the coast and provide secure habitats for the birds;
- The provision of new/enhanced greenspaces as alternatives to visiting the coast.
These activities will be carried out by Bird Aware Solent, their Lead Ranger, Karima Englefield, said: "The sheltered Solent coast provides a rich diversity of habitats for birds, making it one of the most important places in western Europe for them. Winter is tough for birds and they need all the help they can get to feed and rest undisturbed so that they can survive and prepare for their next migration. The new strategy will enable us to protect this precious local environment and help people enjoy the coastline without disturbance to the birds."
Cllr Seán Woodward, Leader of Fareham Borough Council, said: "We're lucky enough to host some beautiful species of bird on our coastline and we want to make sure any disruption to their habitat from building new homes is kept to a minimum. By implementing this strategy we can protect our coastal birds, allowing wildlife to co-exist with future developments across the Borough."
The new strategy will come into effect on 1 April 2018.
Notes to editors:
- The Solent coastline is a Special Protection Area (SPA) due to the large number of important birds there, some of which are rare and vulnerable.
- Definitive Solent Recreation Mitigation Strategy (SRMS) requires developers to make a contribution for all new homes built within 3.5 miles of the SPAs which in practice covers the entire Borough.
- The breakdown of the contribution of a new dwelling by size is:
- £337 for 1 bedroom dwelling;
- £487 for 2-bedroom dwelling;
- £637 for 3-bedroom dwelling;
- £749 for 4-bedroom dwelling; and
- £880 for 5 bedrooms or more.
- The developer contributions for new dwellings within Fareham Borough Council's administrative boundary will be collected by Fareham Borough Council (FBC) and transferred to the SRMP, who will then implement the Strategy. The contributions would be collected either through a legal agreement, which would be a Section 106 agreement or, in situations where a Section 106 agreement would not otherwise be necessary, the Council would secure contributions through Section 111 of the Local Government Act 1972.
- Bird Aware Solent is the public facing brand of the Solent Recreation Mitigation Partnership which consists of Local Authorities (both PUSH and Non-PUSH members), the RSPB, Natural England, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust and Chichester Harbour Conservancy. The purpose of the partnership has been to devise and agree on suitable mitigation measures that enable the proposed quantum of housebuilding in the region to continue whilst ensuring that the recreational impacts from development on the Solent SPAs are mitigated.
For further information contact:
The Communications Team, Tel: 01329 824310
fax: 01329 550576, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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