Over­pass­ing HS2

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - WILD LIFE -

BERKS, Com­mit­tees to make the pro­pos­als, and con­cluded case for bet­ter wildlife that they were likely to pro­tec­tion along the re­sult in lo­cal ex­tinc­tion route. of the pop­u­la­tion. Thanks

As a re­sult of our to BBOWT’s cam­paign­ing cam­paign­ing, green bats will be able to use bridges will now be built the planned un­der­passes over the rail­way line and the green bridges to where it passes through travel from one area to The first phase of the Bern­wood For­est. These an­other, which should High Speed Two (HS2) will have 30m wide pro­tect them from fly­ing rail­way has re­cently ‘green’ plant­ing of grass into trains. passed the fi­nal hur­dle and trees, giv­ing wildlife a One per­cent of the UK’s and con­struc­tion of the safer route over the breed­ing pop­u­la­tion of line is now start­ing. But, rail­way. barn owls are ex­pected to thanks to cam­paign­ing by We have also se­cured a be hit by trains run­ning BBOWT, to­gether with its com­mit­ment to plant on the HS2 route be­tween sup­port­ers and other more wood­land within Birm­ing­ham and Lon­don or­gan­i­sa­tions, we have the Bern­wood For­est area ev­ery year. en­sured there will be less to com­pen­sate for Work­ing with the RSPB im­pact on our wildlife. wood­land along the route we se­cured a re­quire­ment

Over the last seven that will be de­stroyed as for a Barn Owl Ac­tion years BBOWT has worked the rail­way line is built. Plan to be put in place. hard to se­cure im­proveA colony of Bech­stein’s De­tails have yet to be ments to the route, which bats, one of the UK’s agreed, but are likely to passes through Bern­wood rarest mam­mals, lives in in­clude pro­vid­ing nest For­est and has di­rect Fine­mere Wood and boxes and for­ag­ing im­pacts on two of our neigh­bour­ing an­cient habi­tat for barn owls well na­ture re­serves in wood­land. The HS2 route away from the dan­ger Buck­ing­hamshire: bi­sects this colony and zone around the train line.CalvertJu­bilee­and­could­have­hugeim­pacts Fine­mere Wood. on this im­por­tant Thanks to the sup­port of

We have pro­duced pop­u­la­tion. other or­gan­i­sa­tions, re­ports, met with MPs Re­searchers from the no­tably HS2 Ac­tion and ap­peared be­fore Univer­sity of Leeds Al­liance and The Par­lia­men­tary Se­lect looked at the ini­tial Wood­land Trust, as well as lo­cal groups the Chilterns Con­ser­va­tion Board and North Bucks Bat Group, we have been able to work to­gether to en­sure that the im­pact on wildlife is less­ened and ad­di­tional habi­tat is cre­ated, to com­pen­sate for habi­tat de­stroyed by the route.

Ad­di­tional ar­eas of an­cient wood­land will be pro­tected as sec­tions of tun­nel un­der the Chilterns AONB are ex­tended. Pre­vi­ously these ar­eas of pre­cious wood­land, such as Man­tles Wood, would have been de­stroyed or bi­sected by the rail­way line.

Although The Wildlife Trusts are gen­er­ally sup­port­ive of sus­tain­able trans­port schemes – they are an im­por­tant part of our nec­es­sary tran­si­tion to a low car­bon econ­omy – we be­lieve this must not be achieved at the ex­pense of the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment.

As con­struc­tion be­gins, we will be mon­i­tor­ing the im­pact of the work on Calvert Ju­bilee and Fine­mere Wood to en­sure that the reg­u­la­tions to pro­tect wildlife are up­held and vis­i­tors are still able to en­joy vis­it­ing these havens for wildlife.

Find out more about BBOWT’s work re­gard­ing HS2 at www.bbowt.org. uk/hs2

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