Bat Roost Guidance For Construction Companies

Burflex House, Clay Street, Hull, East Yorkshire, HU8 8HA E.

Burflex House, Clay Street, Hull, East Yorkshire, HU8 8HA E.

Bat Roost Guidance For Construction Companies

Bat Roost Guidance For Construction Companies

Bats in the belfry! When undertaking any kind of construction, building or development work, you need to consider that there may well be bats present – so the very first step you should take is to hire an ecological consultant to carry out an assessment of the site. Get in touch with the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management to find a consultant local to you.

The importance of this was recently revealed by the York Press, reporting on the prosecution of a property developer after a bat roost in York was unlawfully demolished.

A planning application had been submitted to the City of York Council a few years ago on behalf of GEM Holdings, along with a bat survey report showing that buildings at North Lodge on Clifton Park Avenue had non-breeding day roosts for common pipistrelle bats on site.

Demolition permission was granted but a European Protected Species License had to be obtained before the work was carried out. However, the building was knocked down without a bat licence being granted or sought from Natural England.

Commenting on the £910 fine that was handed down, head of North Yorkshire Police’s rural and wildlife crime team Sergeant Kevin Kelly said: “Hopefully this serves as a benchmark for those who have the highest level of responsibility placed upon them to respect our wildlife through responsible and accountable planning and construction.

“There are many that follow the procedure to distinction, however there will always be the few that will choose poor decision making.”

According to the Bat Conservation Trust, all bat species in the UK have been known to use buildings to find shelter in but there are some that are more reliant on them than others.

There are four general categories for bats using buildings: crevice-dwellers (hidden from view), roof-void dwellers (which may be visible on roof timbers), bats that require flight space in certain types of roost, and bats that need flight space and flying access into the roost.

The Trust works with all sorts of businesses across a range of different sectors, providing good practice guidelines for bat surveys, resources on bat roost mitigation and enhancement, and training for professionals.

Remember that bats and their roosts are legally protected in a bid to conserve the UK’s native bat populations, which sadly have declined hugely in the last 100 years or so. By law, building developers have to make sure their work will not have a significant impact on these species, which is why an ecological survey is so very necessary.

It could certainly be worth getting in touch with them for further information if you are about to start work on a project and do have concerns that there may well be bats in evidence.

Do you need scaffolders in York? Get in touch with us at Burflex today if so.