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BIODIVERSITY TRIGGER LIST FOR PLANNING DECISIONS IN GREATER MANCHESTER

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					  BIODIVERSITY TRIGGER LIST FOR PLANNING
          DECISIONS IN SALFORD



INTRODUCTION

This document has been designed to assist development control officers when dealing with
biodiversity issues associated with planning applications in Salford. It is designed to provide basic
information on the kind of issues that may need to be addressed by asking a series of questions
that can generally be answered by looking at proposal maps, OS maps or, in a few circumstances,
from a site visit. It is extremely unlikely that all of the issues outlined in this document will occur at
any one site.

Each question is followed by a series of bullet points that link to information boxes. Each box
contains details on the protection, distribution, planning requirement, action to be taken together
with any additional notes.

Protection                   Details of the protection given to a species or site through European
                             and UK legislation.

Distribution                 For species - the likely distribution of a species in Salford and brief
                             details on the kind of habitats it occurs in. This information should
                             enable the officer to judge* whether the species is likely to be an issue
                             on a particular application site.

                             For each type of protected site - the number of sites and their
                             distribution across Salford.

Planning Requirement          Details of the information that may be required to be submitted prior to
                              the planning application being determined. Details of who should be
                              consulted and when in relation to biodiversity issues.

Action                       What action is required after the information detailed in the planning
                             requirement section has been received.

Note                          Any additional information that is not covered above.


Some of the information boxes also contain links to references, contacts, or a more detailed
explanation of a particular point. In addition, there are two links to photographs of invasive
species, Japanese knotweed and giant hogweed. Pictures of all of the species listed have not
been provided to reduce the size of the document but pictures of most of them can be found at the
following website: http://www.arkive.org/species/ARK/

The links in the document work like those on a website, clicking on a link will take you to a new
“page”. Clicking on the “back” icon will return you to your previous place.

*While this document provides basic information, if you are unsure of the answers to these
questions or if you need further advice, please contact the Greater Manchester Ecology Unit
(GMEU) or Planning Policy at Salford City Council.



GMEU                                                1                                          13.6.08
BIODIVERSITY TRIGGER LIST FOR PLANNING DECISIONS IN SALFORD

1)     Is the proposal on or adjacent to a designated site?

                    European Sites
                    SSSIs
                    SBI
                    LNRs

2)     Do the proposals affect any wildlife corridor/green corridor or other semi-
       natural habitat/open space? Does the application involve the removal of any
       vegetation?

                    Bats
                    Badgers
                    Reptiles
                    Habitats & Species of Principal Importance in England
                    Nesting Birds - General

3)     Do the proposals involve any of the following:
             Work within the roof space of any building?
             Demolition of any building?
             Conversion of any building e.g. barn or mill conversions?
             Alterations or works to cellars, bridges, culverts, large stonewalls, caves or
             mines?

                    Bats
                    Barn Owls
                    Black Redstarts
                    Nesting Birds – general

4)     Are the proposals on a quarry, industrial wasteland or Brownfield site?

                    Badgers
                    Reptiles
                    Little Ringed Plover
                    Black Redstart
                    Barn owls
                    Nesting birds - General

5)     Are the proposals in or adjacent to any river, stream, ditch or other large
       water body? Impacts may include direct loss, surface water run-off, discharge of
       contaminants and/or increased public pressure.

                    Otter
                    Bats
                    Water voles
                    Black Redstart
                    Nesting Birds - general
                    Invasive Species



GMEU                                           2                                 13.6.08
6)     Are the proposals directly adjacent to or could they affect a canal? Impacts
       may include de-watering, abstraction, works affecting the integrity of the banks,
       shading, discharges of contaminants, surface water run-off and/or increased public
       access.
                  Floating water plantain
                  White-clawed crayfish
                  Water vole
                  Black Redstart
                  Invasive species
                  European Sites
                  SSSI
                  SBI

7)     Are the proposals within 250m of a pond or small reservoir (mill lodge)? This
       does not include ornamental ponds.

                    Great crested newts
                    Water voles
                    Nesting Birds - general

8)     Do the proposals include the felling of any trees and/or scrub or work to any
       trees including TPO trees?

                    Bats
                    Nesting Birds - general

9)     Do the proposals directly affect or are they on or adjacent to any hedgerow
       and/or woodland? Impacts may include loss of trees and scrub, lighting, litter,
       noise and/or increased public access.

                    Bats
                    Badger
                    Nesting Birds - General

10)    Are there any invasive species on the proposed site?

                    Invasive Species


If you are unsure of the answers to these questions or if you need further advice, please
contact the Greater Manchester Ecology Unit (GMEU) and Marion Raines.

In terms of potential impacts by development on biodiversity features, in the first instance
the approach should be to avoid any impact. However, in some cases this may not be
possible and “mitigation” measures designed to reduce the degree of impact will be
necessary. However, although it may be possible to mitigate to some extent, it should not
be assumed that the proposal is acceptable.

Where species protected by law occur on a site, the applicant may need to apply for an
appropriate licence from Natural England separate to any planning permission.



GMEU                                           3                                  13.6.08
GREAT CRESTED NEWT

Protection: European Protected Species - Full at all times under Schedule 2 of the
Conservation (Natural Habitats &c.) Regulations 1994 (as amended).

Distribution: Great Crested Newts are found in ponds and small reservoirs (mill lodges)
throughout Salford. GMEU hold records of known great crested newt locations, although
this data is not comprehensive.

Planning requirement: Major proposals within 250m of a pond/ lodge or minor proposals
within 100m of pond should include a survey for great crested newts. Where known
records for great crested newt occur this should be 500m & 250m respectively. (Note: A
major proposals is one that is more than 10 dwellings or more than 0.5 hectares or for
non-residential development is more than 1000m2 floor area or more than 1 hectare. Such
a survey should be carried out by a surveyor licensed by Natural England (successor to
English Nature) and to the standards laid out in English Nature’s Mitigation Guidelines.
Surveys should be submitted with applications and should include any necessary
mitigation works to demonstrate that the favourable conservation status of the newts can
be maintained.

Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU on results of survey. If it is agreed that
favourable conservation status of newts can be maintained, attach appropriate conditions
and/or planning agreement. Consider other the two tests under Regulations when
determining application. All three tests must be met before planning permission can be
granted.

Note: Since the absence of great crested newts can be very difficult to prove conclusively,
even if newts are not found it may be necessary to attach some conditions to any
permission, e.g. the need for resurvey if the development does not take place within a
certain time frame.




GMEU                                        4                                    13.6.08
 WATER VOLE

 Protection: The water vole is fully protected under Schedule 9 of the Wildlife &
 Countryside Act 1981 (as amended).

 Distribution: Water voles are likely to occur throughout Salford but records are
 concentrated on the mosslands. They can occur in most water bodies including ponds,
 lodges, canals, ditches, streams and rivers. GMEU and the Environment Agency hold
 records of known water vole locations, although this data is not comprehensive.

 Planning Requirement: Any application that is likely to affect, either directly or indirectly,
 any waterbody should include a water vole survey. Such a survey should be carried out
 by an appropriately experienced ecologist and to standards laid out in the Water Vole
 Conservation Handbook. Surveys should be submitted with applications and should
 include any necessary mitigation works.

 Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU on results of survey. If mitigation can be
 agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.

 Note: It may also be necessary to consult the Environment Agency depending on the
 location of the application.




FLOATING WATER PLANTAIN (LURONIUM NATANS)

Protection: European Protected Species - It is protected under Schedule 4 of the
Conservation (Natural Habitats, etc.) Regulations 1994 (as amended).

Distribution: This plant species occurs throughout the canal system in Greater Manchester.
In Salford, it is found in the Bridgewater Canal, through Barton and Patricoft.

Planning Requirement: Any proposals that may affect the habitat of this species or the
species itself should either include an up to date survey, undertaken by an appropriately
licensed ecologist together with any necessary mitigation or, since it is difficult to survey for
this species, be designed on the assumption that the plant is present in the canal and
include appropriate mitigation. Surveys and mitigation reports should demonstrate that the
favourable conservation status of the plant can be maintained and be submitted before the
application is determined.

Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU on results of survey. If the mitigation can be
agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement. Consider the other two
tests under the Regulations when determining the application.




GMEU                                           5                                     13.6.08
WHITE-CLAWED CRAYFISH

Protection: Limited protection under the Habitats Directive and on Schedule 5 of the Wildlife
& Countryside Act.

Distribution: The distribution of this species is largely unknown across Greater Manchester.
It is found in the Rochdale Canal and Huddersfield Narrow Canal. It is possible that it may
be present in the Bridgewater canal and other waterbodies, but is only likely to be found by
specialist surveys.

Planning Requirement: Where a proposal will involve de-watering of a canal or works to
canal banks or could result in pollution entering the canal, surveys should be undertaken by
an appropriately licensed ecologist and to the standards laid out in Monitoring the White -
Clawed Crayfish. Surveys and any necessary mitigation should be submitted before the
application is determined.

Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU on results of survey. If the mitigation can be
agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.




 INVASIVE SPECIES – JAPANESE KNOTWEED & GIANT HOGWEED

 Legislation: It is an offence under the Wildlife & Countryside Act to plant or cause these
 species to grow in the wild. Under the Environmental Protection Act Japanese Knotweed
 and Giant Hogweed are classed as “controlled waste” and as such must be disposed of at
 a licensed landfill site according to the EPA (Duty of Care) Regulations 1991.

 Distribution: Japanese Knotweed is widespread across Salford. It frequently occurs by
 watercourses but is also found in many “urban” sites such as Brownfield sites. Giant
 Hogweed is less common and is more restricted to watercourses, although it does occur in
 other locations notably road verges and railway embankments or where it has escaped
 from gardens.

 Planning Requirement: If either species is identified on site, attach a condition for the
 production of a method statement for their control. Such a statement should be produced
 before any development commences on site and should follow current guidelines from the
 Environment Agency.

 Action: Consult GMEU on method statement.

 Note: Giant Hogweed has sap that reacts in sunlight causing skin to painfully burn and
 blister. The applicants will also need permission from the Environment Agency before
 using herbicide near water.




GMEU                                         6                                    13.6.08
 OTTER

 Protection: European Protected Species - Full at all times under Schedule 2 of the
 Conservation (Natural Habitats &c.) Regulations 1994 (as amended).

 Distribution: There are currently confirmed records of otter on the River Bollin in Trafford
 and the River Goyt in Stockport, with unconfirmed reports in Wigan. Since the national
 otter population is currently recovering, new locations may be discovered over time and in
 the future otters may return to Salford. Otters are mainly found on rivers, but also use
 canals, marshes, small streams, ditches, ponds and lakes. They require rivers with clean
 water with an abundant, varied supply of food and plenty of bankside vegetation offering
 secluded sites for their holts.

 Planning Requirement: If a proposal is likely to impact on a major river or its tributaries, an
 assessment of its suitability for otters should be undertaken by an appropriately
 experienced ecologist. If the watercourse is considered suitable, a full otter survey should
 be undertaken to standards laid out by the national otter survey. Surveys should be
 submitted with applications and should include any necessary mitigation works to
 demonstrate that the favourable conservation status of the otters can be maintained.

 Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU on results of the assessment and any
 surveys. If otters are found and any necessary mitigation can be agreed, attach
 appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement. Consider the other two tests under the
 Regulations when determining the application.

 Note: It may also be necessary to consult the Environment Agency.




GMEU                                          7                                     13.6.08
BATS

Protection: All species of bats are European Protected Species with full protection at all
times under Schedule 2 of the Conservation (Natural Habitats &c.) Regulations 1994 (as
amended). Bat roosts are also protected, even when unoccupied.

Distribution: Bats are found across Salford and roost in a variety of buildings and
structures. These include:
            Trees with hollows, cracks and cavities
            Culverts
            Chimneys
            Stone or/brick built structures.
            Bridges
            Mines and caves
            Underground structures such as cellars

The only buildings that are unlikely to support bats are:
           Prefabricated buildings with steel or sheet materials such as modern
              industrial warehouses or agricultural buildings.
           Flat roof structures with no roof voids or soffit boards.

All other buildings are likely to require a bat survey.

Records of known bat roosts are the South Lancashire Bat Group and GMEU.

Planning Requirement: Any application affecting a building(s), structure(s), or tree(s) that
are likely to be suitable for bats should include a bat survey undertaken by an
appropriately licensed ecologist and to standards laid out in English Nature’s Bat
Mitigation Guidelines. Surveys should be submitted with applications and should include
any necessary mitigation works to demonstrate that the favourable conservation status of
the bats can be maintained.

Where a proposal will affect the foraging habitat of an important roost site but not the roost
itself, appropriate mitigation will also be necessary. It may also be necessary to include a
lighting strategy within an application to limit the impact of lighting on bat activity.

Action: Consult GMEU on results of survey and if bats are found Natural England should
also be consulted. If it is agreed that favourable conservation status of the bats can be
maintained, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement. Consider the other
two tests under Regulations when determining application.

Note: Since the absence of bats can be very difficult to prove conclusively and since bats
move roost sites on a regular basis, even if bats are not found it may be necessary to
attached conditions to any permission, e.g. the need to resurvey immediately prior to
demolition. However inconclusive bat surveys where the site is considered to have a high
or medium potential to support bats are unlikely to be acceptable.




GMEU                                            8                                   13.6.08
NESTING BIRDS - GENERAL

Protection: Under the Wildlife & Countryside Act all wild birds are protected when they are
nesting. The protection also applies to their eggs and nests.

Distribution: Wild nesting birds occur across Salford. Nesting birds are likely to be found
in trees, hedgerows, scrub, or grassland. In addition, they may also use barns, mill
buildings or houses. Some birds have more specialised nesting habits for example sand
martins nest in riverbanks or cliff faces. The nesting season is generally taken to be
March to July inclusive in Salford, although some species such as grey heron start nesting
in February, while in warm summers the season for some birds may be extended into
August.

Planning Requirement/Action: Attach a condition to ensure no works take place during the
bird-breeding season (generally March to July inclusive). For sand martins more detailed
mitigation may be necessary, contact GMEU for advice.

Note: Some birds are given full protection under the Act at all times. In Salford the
following birds fall in to this category and may be affected by planning proposals: Barn
Owl; Black Redstart; Little Ringed Plover; and Kingfisher. Other schedule 1 birds that
occur include Bittern, Peregrine Falcon, Black Necked-Grebe, Hobby, Quail, Whooper
Swan, Merlin and Green Sandpiper. These birds are only likely to be affected by planning
proposals on an occasional basis. In these cases, seek advice from GMEU.



BARN OWL

Protection: Barn owls are fully protected at all times under Schedule 1 of the Wildlife &
Countryside Act.

Distribution: There are believed to be approximately 10 pairs of nesting barn owls in
Greater Manchester, the majority of which occur on the mossland. Outside of the
breeding season birds can be found away from their breeding sites. The County Bird
Recorder, Judith Smith, holds data on the location of known barn owl sites.

Barn owls prefer sheltered, dry, undisturbed buildings and each pair has more than one
breeding and roost site within its territory. Equally important to their survival is the
amount of surrounding feeding habitat, including open country, derelict industrial land,
along field edges, riverbanks golf courses and roadside verges.

Planning Requirement: Any application for a barn conversion or conversion of other
suitable buildings should include a barn owl survey. Such a survey should be undertaken
by an appropriately licensed ecologist and at an appropriate time of year. Any proposals
that affect the feeding territory of owls should also include a survey. If barn owls are
found on site appropriate mitigation works should also be submitted before the application
is determined.

Action: Consult GMEU on the results of survey. If barn owls are found Natural England
should also be consulted. If the survey and the mitigation can be agreed, attach
appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.


GMEU                                        9                                    13.6.08
BLACK REDSTART

Protection: Black Redstarts are fully protected at all times under Schedule 1 of the
Wildlife & Countryside Act.

Distribution: Black Redstarts occur on urban Brownfield sites near open water. They
prefer sites which are sparsely vegetated with stony ground and that have vertical
structures such as building gantries. They also prefer sites that have a variety of ledges
or holes for nesting sites. In Greater Manchester they are found mostly within
Manchester City Centre but are also known to occur in Ashton-under-Lyne, Tameside.
Birds have also been recorded in Wigan, Bolton and Stockport. Since they can be
difficult to detect, there is a possibility that the birds are present in Salford, where
suitable habitat exists.

The County Bird Recorder, Judith Smith, holds data on the location of known black
redstart sites.

Planning Requirement: Any proposal on a suitable black redstart site should include a
survey undertaken to the standards laid out in the Greater Manchester Black Redstart
Biodiversity Action Plan. Such a survey should include any appropriate mitigation and
be received before the application is determined.

Action: Consult GMEU on results of survey. If the survey and the mitigation can be
agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.




 KINGFISHER

 Protection: Kingfishers are fully protected at all times under Schedule 1 of the Wildlife
 & Countryside Act.

 Distribution: Kingfishers may occur along any suitable river, stream or canal across
 Salford. They nest in holes in riverbanks. The County Bird Recorder, Judith Smith,
 holds data on the location of known kingfishers.

 Planning Requirement: For any proposal that may impact on riverbanks, canal banks
 or riverine habitat surveys for kingfishers should be included. Such a survey should be
 undertaken by an appropriately experienced ecologist and at a suitable time of year
 (April-July inclusive). Surveys and any necessary mitigation should be received before
 the application is determined.

 Action: Consult GMEU on the results of survey and if the birds are found Natural
 England should also be consulted. If the survey and the mitigation can be agreed,
 attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.




GMEU                                         10                                     13.6.08
 LITTLE RINGED PLOVER

 Protection: Little Ringed Plover are fully protected at all times under Schedule 1 of the
 Wildlife & Countryside Act.

 Distribution: Little Ringed Plover naturally nest on shingle banks near freshwater. They
 have subsequently adapted to nest in man-made habitats such as gravel pits and
 industrial wasteland. They are an opportunistic breeder so may occur at any suitable
 site where sparse vegetation and gravely ground occurs. The County Bird Recorder,
 Judith Smith, holds data on the location of known Little Ringed Plovers.

 Planning Requirement/Action: On suitable sites where there is nesting or if it is known
 to occur, attach a condition for surveys to be undertaken prior to work commencing if
 during the bird breeding season (March to July inclusive). At other suitable sites an
 informative should also be placed on any permission that if these birds are found
 nesting on sites all work must stop until after the birds have finished nesting.




 REPTILES – GRASS SNAKES, ADDERS, SLOW WORMS & COMMON LIZARDS

 Protection: Limited protection under the Wildlife and Countryside Act (protected against
 intentional killing, injury or sale).

 Distribution: There are occasional records of reptiles across Greater Manchester. They
 may be found on a variety of sites including: heathland, moorland, woodlands, disused
 allotments, suburban wastelands, railway embankments, road verges, golf courses,
 disused quarries, wild gardens and stone walls. In addition, grass snakes favour areas
 associated with water.

 Planning Requirement: Where there is a reasonable expectation that reptiles are likely
 to be present (such as a record from a reputable source) or an existing record, surveys
 for these species should be undertaken. Such surveys should be undertaken by an
 appropriately experienced ecologist and to standards laid out by Froglife. Surveys and
 any necessary mitigation should be submitted prior to the application being determined.

 Action: Consult GMEU on the results of survey. If the survey and the mitigation can be
 agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.

 Note: Further guidelines on reptiles and development are available from Natural
 England.




GMEU                                        11                                     13.6.08
 BADGERS

 Protection: Badgers and their setts are protected under the Protection of Badgers Act
 1992. While this protection largely relates to welfare issues, badgers are still
 considered a protected species and are therefore a material consideration when
 determining planning applications.

 Distribution: Badgers occur throughout Salford. Badger setts tend to occur in areas
 where there is cover such as woodlands or scrub but they are also found in disused
 quarries, railway embankments or open grassland. They are not restricted to rural
 areas and often use gardens as a part of their foraging habitat.

 GMEU hold records of known badger locations, although this data is not
 comprehensive. Local badger groups also hold such information.

 Planning Requirement: On suitable sites, or in areas where there is a known badger
 population, surveys for the presence of badgers should be undertaken. Surveys should
 be undertaken by an experienced badger consultant at an appropriate time of year.
 Surveys should include an area of at least 30m outside of the application site. For some
 sites or proposals it may be necessary to undertaken more detail survey work such as
 bait marking. This type of survey should be undertaken using standard methodology.
 Surveys and any necessary mitigation should be submitted prior to the application being
 determined. Mitigation should include, where appropriate, protection of setts and
 protection of foraging/access routes across sites.

 Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU on results of the survey. If the mitigation
 can be agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.

 Note: A licence may also be required from Natural England if the proposals include
 works within 30m of a badger sett. Licences are generally not issued for works between
 the beginning of December and the end of June (see Badgers and Development for
 more information).




 Note: Details of the locations of badger setts should not be placed on the public record,
 due the persecution the species suffers. Wherever possible reference in public
 documents should refer to “a species specially protected by law” or a “protected
 species”.

GMEU                                       12                                    13.6.08
 HABITATS & SPECIES OF PRINCIPAL IMPORTANCE IN ENGLAND

 Protection: Under Section 41 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act
 2006, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is obliged to list
 those habitats and species considered to be of principal importance for the conservation
 of biological diversity in England. The current list was published in 2008 and will be kept
 under review. The full list of Habitats and Species is published by Defra (S41).

 These species and habitats are sometimes referred to as Section 41 Species and
 Habitats (S41). (They may also be referred to as Section 74 Species and Habitats after
 the section in the Countryside & Rights of Way Act, where they were first introduced).
 Some of these habitats and species may also be protected by other legislation.

 Distribution: Not all of the habitats and species listed under Section 41 occur in Greater
 Manchester. Those habitats, as defined by the UK BAP, that may occur in Salford are
 listed below, with those known to occur in bold

        Arable field margins                         Eutrophic standing waters
        Hedgerows                                    Lowland dry acid grassland
        Lowland fen                                  Lowland heathland
        Lowland meadows                              Lowland mixed deciduous
                                                       woodland
        Lowland raised bog                           Open mosaic habitats on
                                                       previously developed land
        Ponds                                        Reedbeds
        Rivers                                       Wet woodland
        Wood-Pasture & Parkland

 There are now 940 species listed under Section 41. Of these the most relevant to
 planning decision in Salford are listed below with confirmed species in bold:

        Common Toad                      Great Crested Newt
        Adder                            Grass Snake
        Common Lizard                    Slow Worm
        Hedgehog                         Water Vole
        Brown hare                       Otter
        Noctule                          Soprano Pipistrelle
        Brown Long-eared                 Bullfinch
         bat
        Linnet                           Skylark
        Tree pipit                       Lesser Redpoll
        Cuckoo                           Corn bunting
        Reed bunting                     Yellowhammer
        Yellow wagtail                   Spotted flycatcher
        Curlew                           House sparrow
        Tree sparrow                     Grey partridge
        Willow Tit                       Dunnock (Hedge Accentor)
        Song thrush                      Starling
        Lapwing                          Nightjar


GMEU                                        13                                     13.6.08
          White-clawed crayfish          Amara famelica – a ground beetle
          Grasswrack pondweed            Tortula freibergii – Freiberg’s screw-moss
          Floating water
           plantain


 There are also 4 species of fish, 2 other species of beetle, 3 species of butterfly, 2
 molluscs, 1 byrozoan, 4 other species of plant, 1 other bryophyte, 49 species of moth and
 several other bird species that are on the list, which occur in Greater Manchester and
 could also be found in Salford.

 Planning Requirement: Planning Policy Statement on Biodiversity and Geological
 Conservation (PPS9) states that planning authorities should ensure that Section 41 (S74)
 species are protected from the adverse effects of development, where appropriate, by
 using planning conditions and obligations. It also states that planning authorities should
 refuse permission where harm to the species or their habitat would result unless the need
 for, and benefits of, the development clearly out weigh that harm. In relation to Section 41
 habitats the statement says that local authorities should protect networks of natural
 habitats from development, and where possible, strength or integrated them within
 development.

 Planning applications that may affect such species or habitats should therefore include
 appropriate surveys, undertaken by an appropriately experienced ecologist and at the
 correct time of year. These surveys should be submitted with the application together with
 any necessary mitigation measures.

 Action: Consult GMEU on the results of the survey and proposed mitigation.

 The application should be refused if the harm to the species or their habitat is not clearly
 outweighed by the need for, and the benefits of the development. If the development will
 result in the isolation or fragmentation of a Section 41 habitat the application should be
 refused unless there is appropriate mitigation / compensation include.

 If the mitigation can be agreed, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement.


 Note: The Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 states that a local
 authority must, in exercising its functions, have regard, so far as is consistent with the
 proper exercise of those functions, to the purpose of conserving biodiversity.

 Section 74 of the Countryside & Rights of Way Act has been superseded by Section 41 of
 the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006. However, PPS9 published
 before the latter act, refers to the older legislation.




GMEU                                       14                                   13.6.08
EUROPEAN SITES – SPAs & cSACs

Protection: Both Special Protection Areas of Birds (SPAs) and Special Areas of
Conservation (SACs) are classed as European sites. SPAs are classified under the Birds
Directive while SACs are designated under the Habitats Directive. Protection of these
sites in Britain is given through the Conservation (Natural Habitats &c.) Regulations 1994
(as amended).

Distribution: There are currently no European sites within Salford. However, Bedford &
Astley Mosses in Wigan has been designated as a part of the Manchester Mosses SAC.
Development within Salford could potentially affect this SAC.

Planning Requirement: Under Regulation 48(1) of the Habitats Regulations any plan or
project that may affect a European Site requires an appropriate assessment to be
undertaken where the plan or project:
       a.    Either alone or in combination with other plans or projects would be likely to
             have a significant effect on a European Site, and
       b.    is not directly connected with the management of the site for nature
             conservation.

Such an appropriate assessment should be undertaken before any competent authority
grants consent, permission or authorises the plan or project. Developments that would
otherwise be permitted development have the same requirement.

The appropriate assessment must be undertaken by a competent authority. Local
authorities are included in the list of competent authorities under the legislation. The plan
or project does not have to be located within the European Site to require an appropriate
assessment; the proposal may be in a different local authority area for example. The
developer or proposer of the plan is required to provide relevant information in order for
the appropriate assessment to be made.

Action: Where any proposal may have an affect on a European Site:
         1. Undertake an appropriate assessment.
         2. Consult Natural England on the proposal and have regard to their
            representations (a legal requirement).
         3. Identify what the effects of the proposals are likely to be.
         4. Decide whether the proposal would adversely affect the integrity of the site,
            in light of its conservation objectives.
         5. Should an adverse effect be predicted, consider whether the proposals can
            be modified or whether conditions or restrictions could be imposed to avoid
            this.
         6. Conclude whether, in light of any modifications, conditions or restrictions,
            the proposal would adversely affect the integrity of the site. If yes, refuse
            permission. If no, grant permission with appropriate conditions etc but notify
            Natural England before any permission or consent is granted.
         7. Complete a record of the appropriate assessment and notify Natural
            England of its conclusions.

This advice is a brief summary of the steps that need to be taken. More detailed
guidance can be found in the series of Habitat Regulations Guidance Notes issued by
Natural England.

GMEU                                         15                                    13.6.08
Note: Sites may be covered by more than one designation. A site may be both a SPA and
an SAC, for example, if it qualifies under the differing criteria for both Directives. European
Sites must be designated as a SSSI and may have other ecological value in addition to the
reasons for the European designation. Therefore, any assessment of proposals that affect a
European Site must also consider the impact on the SSSI.

The requirements under Regulations 48(1) also apply to the reviews of existing planning
permissions and other consents that are required under the Habitats Regulations.




 GMEU                                         16                                    13.6.08
SSSIs

Protection: Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) are protected through the Wildlife &
Countryside Act, as amended by the Countryside & Rights of Way Act. They may be
designated for their geological value as well as their ecological value.

Distribution: There are currently no SSSIs in Salford. However, it is understood that
Natural England is considering the designation of a central part of Botany Bay Wood as a
SSSI. The potential designation as a SSSI relates to a very large heronry within the middle
of the wood. In addition, Astley and Bedford Moss SSSI lies within close proximity to the
Salford boundary and development within Salford could potentially affect this site.

Planning Requirement: Development proposals in or that are likely to affect SSSIs must be
subject to special scrutiny. Applicants should be advised to consult Natural England
directly prior to any planning application being submitted to the Council. Local authorities
must consult Natural England once any such proposal has been submitted.

Any proposal should include surveys relevant to the interest of the particular SSSI, an
assessment of the likely impacts of the proposals and any mitigation measures. This
information should be received prior to the application being determined.

Action: After consultation with Natural England:

       If the impact of the proposal can be mitigated and the mitigation has been agreed by
        Natural England, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement to any
        permission.

       If proposals are likely to have an adverse affect, either directly or indirectly, on the
        SSSI and the reasons for the development do not clearly outweigh the nature
        conservation value of the site itself and the national policies to safeguard such site
        the application should be refused.

       Natural England should be informed of any decisions relating to the proposals.

Note: The Secretary of State will normally call-in proposals that are likely to have a
significant effect on a SSSI.

Sites may be covered by more than one designation. A SSSI may also be a European Site
(SPA and/or SAC), a LNR or an SBI. The boundaries of these designations may not
necessarily be the same and the reasons for designation may differ.




GMEU                                           17                                    13.6.08
 SBIs

 Protection: Sites of Biological Importance (SBIs) are protected through policies in
 Unitary Development Plans (UDPs) and are recognised by central government as an
 important ecological resource (PPS9).

 Distribution: There are currently 33 SBIs within Salford and their locations are shown on
 the UDP proposals map, although some SBIs have been identified subsequently to the
 production of the UDP and there is a need to check the SBI Register. The Register of
 sites is maintained by GMEU on behalf of the City Council.

 SBIs are assigned one of three grades:
       Grade A – of regional or county importance
       Grade B – of district importance
       Grade C –– of importance within the identified geographical locality

 Planning Requirement: Any proposal that may affect a SBI, either directly or indirectly
 should be accompanied by surveys relevant to the interest of the particular SBI, an
 assessment of the likely impacts of the proposals and any proposed mitigation
 measures.     This information should be received prior to the application being
 determined. The level of mitigation required and the weight that should given to the
 designation will be dependent on the grade of a particular site, the type of habitats and
 species it supports and the nature/extent of the development impact.

 GMEU should be consulted on any proposal affecting an SBI. GMEU would normally
 expect to see a buffer zone of a minimum of 10 metres between any development and
 an SBI. In some instances a greater buffer zone may be required, depending on the
 topography of the site and the type of proposal.

 Action: If the impact of the proposal can be mitigated and the mitigation has been
 agreed by GMEU, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement to any
 permission.

 If the proposals are likely to have an adverse affect, either directly or indirectly, on the
 SBI that cannot be mitigated and the reasons for the development do not clearly
 outweigh the nature conservation value of the site itself, and the UDP policies that
 safeguard such sites, the application should be refused.

 Note: SBIs and SSSIs may overlap. An SBI may, for example include additional areas
 to a SSSI. Therefore, any assessment of proposals that affect a SSSI should also
 consider the impact on the SBI.




GMEU                                         18                                    13.6.08
LNRs

Protection: Local Nature Reserves (LNRs) are designated under the National Parks &
Access to the Countryside Act 1949. They are declared by local authorities after
consultation with Natural England. They are also protected through policies in Unitary
Development Plans (UDPs). They may be designated for their geological value as well as
their ecological value.

Distribution: There are currently five LNRs in Salford. These are:

             Blackleach Country Park
             Clifton Country Park
             The Cliff/Kersal Dale
             Worsley Woods
             Kersal Moor

Planning Requirement: Any proposal that may affect a LNR, either directly or indirectly,
should be accompanied by surveys relevant to the interest of the particular LNR, an
assessment of the likely impacts of the proposals and any proposed mitigation measures.
This information should be received prior to the application being determined. The level of
mitigation required will be dependent on the type of habitats and species it supports.

Action: Consult Natural England and GMEU.

If the impact of the proposal can be mitigated and the mitigation has been agreed by the
above organisations, attach appropriate conditions and/or planning agreement to any
permission.

If the proposals are likely to have an adverse affect, either directly or indirectly, on the
LNR that cannot be mitigated and the reasons for the development do not clearly outweigh
the nature conservation value of the site itself, and the UDP policies that safeguard such
sites, the application should be refused.

Note: In most cases LNRs will include all or parts of one or more SBIs.




GMEU                                         19                                    13.6.08
EUROPEAN PROTECTED SPECIES

If a European protected species is found on site, then under the Habitats Directive and the
Conservation (Natural Habitats, &c.) Regulations 1994 (as amended) which enacts the
Directive into the UK, a licence is required from DEFRA to derogate the terms of this
legislation. Before a licence can be granted three tests must be satisfied. These are:

i)     That the development is “in the interest of public health and public safety, or for other
       imperative reasons of overriding public interest, including those of a social or
       economic nature and beneficial consequence of primary importance for the
       environment”;

ii)    That there is “no satisfactory alternative”;

iii)   That the derogation is “not detrimental to the maintenance of the populations of the
       species concerned at a favourable conservation status in their natural range”.

In considering planning applications that may affect European Protected Species, Local
Planning Authorities are bound by Regulation 3(4) of the Conservation (Natural Habitats,
&c.) Regulations to have regard to the Habitats Directive when exercising their function.
Defra Circular 2/2002 gives guidance to local authorities on how these issues should be
considered. All three tests must be satisfied before planning permission is granted on a
site. PPS9 and its accompanying documents also provide advice on how local authorities
should deal with European Protected species.

From August 2007, Local Planning Authorities will be required to submit a detailed
statement on the first two tests with any licence application for European Protected
Species.

FURTHER INFORMATION

        Lists of ecological consultants are held by the Greater Manchester Ecology Unit.
        These lists should not be regraded as a recommendation for any particular
        consultancy.

        Great Crested Newt Mitigation Guidelines – English Nature (2001). Available
        from Natural England’s Website (www.naturalengland.org.uk)

        Water Vole Conservation Handbook (2nd Edition) – Rob Strachan and Tom
        Moorhouse (2006). Published by the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit.

        Monitoring the White-Clawed Crayfish – Peay S (2003) Conserving Natura 2000
        Rivers. Monitoring Series No 1, English Nature, Peterborough.
        (www.english-nature.org.uk/LIFEinUKRivers/publications/crayfish_monitoring.pdf )


        New Guidance for Local Authorities on European Protected Species and
        Changes in Licensing Procedures – Defra Circular 2/2002. HSMO.

        Otter Survey of England 1991-1994. A report on the decline and recovery of
        the otter in England and its distribution, status and conservation 1991-1994. –
        Strachan, R and Jefferies, D.J. (1996). The Vincent Wildlife Trust, London.


GMEU                                            20                                    13.6.08
       Bat Mitigation Guidelines – English Nature (2004). Available from Natural
       England’s Website (www.naturalengland.org.uk)

       Black Redstart Site Survey Protocol Techniques –
       www.gmbp.org.uk/site/images/stories/pdf/Black%20Redstart%20BAP.pdf

       The use of marked bait in studies of the territorial organization of the
       European Badger (Meles meles) – Delanay et al (2000) Mammal Review volume
       30, 73-87. Mammal Society.

       Badgers and Development – English Nature (2002). Available from Natural
       England’s Website (www.naturalengland.org.uk)

       Reptile Survey . An introduction to planning, conducting and interpreting
       surveys for snake and lizard conservation - Froglife Advice Sheet 10. (Available
       from http://www.froglife.org/)

       Reptiles: Guidelines for Developers – English Nature 2004. Available from
       Natural England’s Website (www.naturalengland.org.uk)


       Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 - Section 41: List of
       habitats and species of principal importance in England - DEFRA 2008
       (www.defra.gov.uk/wildlife-countryside/biodiversity/sect41-nerc.htm)




CONTACTS

       Greater Manchester Ecology Unit              0161 3719171
       Natural England (Cheshire to Lancashire)     01642 820342
       Environment Agency                           01925 540000
       Salford City Council (Planning Policy)       0161 7933782
       Judith Smith, County Bird Recorder           01942 712615
       South Lancashire Bat Group                   records.slbg@talktalk.net




GMEU                                      21                                    13.6.08
PICTURES

            Giant Hogweed




           Japanese knotweed




GMEU              22           13.6.08

				
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