Biodiversity and development management
The consideration of biodiversity matters is an important part of the determination of a planning application and is guided by various national, regional and local policies.
It is usually very valuable to enter into pre-application discussions with the Local Planning Authority before submitting a planning application. There may be a charge for pre-application advice, dependant on the size and complexity of your proposals.
Our Biodiversity Officers will need lots of information so they can assess the proposals. They are unable to make any site visits without it, so you should provide:
- A location map
- A plan of the site
- Photographs of the site
- Sketch plans/description of your proposals
- Any known biodiversity constraints - designated sites; protected species; important habitats or features (e.g. hedgerows and ponds)
- Copies of any relevant biodiversity/ecological assessments
- Possible proposals for biodiversity enhancements
The application process
As part of your planning application you may be required to provide additional information. The level of information required will depend on the type, scale and complexity of the planning application, and might include a range of issues, from the details of any trees to be removed to a detailed ecological assessment and appraisal. Each application type is accompanied by a checklist, which states what information should be submitted with the application. Further guidance is available about when an ecological appraisal is required and what should be included in it.
It is crucial that the ecological assessment/appraisal and any ecological enhancement or habitat creation scheme is prepared in conjunction with the Arboricultural Implications Assessment and the Landscape Assessment or Scheme for the site.
Conditions with planning permission
Your planning permission may include conditions related to biodiversity and it is important that you comply with these conditions, for example measures to ensure that protected species are considered during construction; the implementation of a nature conservation management plan; and installation of habitat features, such as artificial bat and bird roosts.