Sevenoaks District Draft Local Plan Consultation July 2018

Document Section Draft Local Plan July 2018 Safeguarding places for Wildlife and Nature Blue Green Infrastructure and the Natural Environment Policy 6 - Safeguarding Places for Wildlife and Nature [View all comments on this section]
Comment ID DLPP154
Respondent North West Kent Countryside Pa… [View all comments by this respondent]
Response Date 28 Aug 2018
Current Status Accepted
Comment

In general I think this is a well thought out chapter and policy, which seems to genuinely take the needs of wildlife into consideration. 

Please be aware of Natural Flood Management techniques. https://www.sepa.org.uk/media/163560/sepa-natural-flood-management-handbook1.pdf  These can be small or large scale; NWKCP is currently delivering the KCC Natural Flood Management contract for West Kent and can be consulted about new projects.

You rightly mention the importance of both and small and large scale habitat creation in both rural and urban environments. Small scale improvements such as "plots for pollinators" (https://butterfly-conservation.org/how-you-can-help/plots-for-pollinators) can make a difference. 

In terms of INNS, please note the following: RAPID is a 3 year EU Life funded project whose objective is to deliver a package of measured to reduce the impact and spread of invasive alien species (IAS) in freshwater aquatic, riparian and coastal environments across England. An intregal component of RAPID is the development of Regional IAS Management Plans (RIMPs).  Medway Valley Countryside Partnership together with Medway Swale Estuary Partnership and in consultation with local stakeholders, are compiling the RIMP for the South East region. This will be available in a few months' time.

When planning wildlife corridors, please take the wider context of wildlife into consideration. For example, much of the district is a Strategic Opportunity Area for Great Crested Newts and ponds of a certain size and depth can significantly improve their numbers. Smaller ponds and wetlands would have no impact on GCN numbers. It is important to know what wildlife is present nearby.

I loved the mention of holes in fences for hedgehogs etc. These small considerations can make such a difference to wildlife and allow them to move around sufficiently to support populations.

In terms of creating new green spaces and allowing for their maintenance, this ties in with health and wellbeing. New developments can have "friends of" groups to maintain their green spaces. In this way, both residents and the green spaces both benefit.

In terms of planting to combat pollution please be aware that the latest research indicates that road pollution can best be tackled by planting low-level hedgerows. It is thought that trees can hold in pollution on roads. New schools and developments alongside roads should have native hedgerows planting in between as protection. Information on most effective species can be found here: https://www.treecouncil.org.uk/Press-News/Hedges-reduce-the-impact-of-air-pollution

 

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