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Planning Matters ... | Hedgehogs

Planning Matters ...

Hugh Warwick
Oxford, ENG, United Kingdom

6 Aug 2020 —

There has been a huge splash in the media about the government announcement to relax planning restrictions on new developments. This has many layers of worry to it - not least the risk that we will lose more of our precious green places to inappropriately built houses. The people who need homes the most are those who need starter properties - the young who have been priced out of the market by the good fortune of those who bought before they were born.

But from a hedgehog point of view - this reveals the importance of pushing to get extra protection for the animal - and the real need to get the guidance for hedgehog highways to be included changed into something with a little more in the way of teeth.

In the meantime it is up to us, I am afraid. Government is not able to step up and make the changes we need now. But we can help. As many of you have been telling me already - there is real value in contacting the developers of a new estate as soon as there is evidence of action. Speak to them, write to them, get your family, friends and neighbours to lobby them - asking that they consider hedgehogs in their build.

And if you are able to follow the local news, and you see plans being discussed - stick your oar in! This is not, as I was quoted in the Times on Monday, about "throwing more newts on the fire" - this is not about us trying to stop young people getting a home of their own. This is about how we can work to help wildlife. And we can ...

In other news today - real evidence of what people can achieve ... Beavers are back in England! I wrote about the work done in Scotland in my book, The Beauty in the Beast - and I have just read an amazing book by Derek Gow (who I am about to go and visit) - Bringing Back the Beaver - not out until 10th September but well worth reading when you can. The reason this is important is that it shows we can make dramatic changes to the fate of wildlife. When I am sinking into gloom about the state of the world and I hear the call of the Red Kite over my house I am reminded that positive change can happen - all it needs is a few good people to do good things! So let's be those people!



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