Ecological Planning & Research

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ecological advice & training for local authorities

Ecological Planning Advice for a Local Planning Authority

Stroud District Council

EPR has been commissioned to provide ecological advice and support to Stroud District Council (SDC) both as part of the development control process in relation to a range of planning applications, and through the provision of information, advice and support for the planning policy team. We have also provided internal training to planning officers.

Ecological Planning Advice for a Local Planning Authority

Basingstoke and Deane District Council

EPR was contracted to provide ecological advice to development control officers, during a period when the Council’s in-house advisor was on maternity leave. Our expert ecologists helped to examine a range of types and sizes of planning applications, and provide advice on the potential ecological implications and how these might best be addressed by applicants.

Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) and Appropriate Assessment (AA) Advice

Woking Borough Council

EPR was commissioned to produce a series of Technical Advice Notes, for internal use to assist planning officers when dealing with the implications of development for the nearby Thames Basin Heaths SPA.

Training and Advice in Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA) and Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA)

Chelmsford City Council

Following our initial commission to run two in-house workshops (one on EcIA and one on HRA) for planning officers from both the City Council and neighbouring Local Planning Authorities, EPR was subsequently commissioned to provide HRA advice in respect of a number of planning applications with the potential to affect coastal SPA and SACs. Our advice enabled the Council to be more confident that they had fully addressed the potential implications of the subject applications, and made decisions that were compliant with the requirements of the Habitats Regulations.

Portsmouth City Local Plan

Portsmouth City Council

EPR carried out an assessment of effects of the City Local Plan on Portsmouth Harbour SPA, and advice to the City Council on nature conservation issues; specifically relating to European interests within the Harbour and the application of the Habitats Regulations.  This also involved extensive winter bird surveys throughout Portsmouth Harbour, including both tidal cycle and low tide counts.

Habitats Regulations Advice/Training

Environment Agency

EPR has provided training to Environment Agency staff with respect to the application of the Habitats Regulations covering, in particular, the interaction of the EA's statutory duties for fisheries, flood protection, and river management, with the requirements of the Regulations.


EPR has also provided the Environment Agency with advice regarding their water resources Appropriate Assessments for Solent European Marine Site, and regarding the review of discharge consents into the River Itchen SAC specifically relating to effects on Salmon and suitable compensation measures.

Lyme Regis Coastal Stabilisation

West Dorset District Council

EPR has been involved over a number of years in the stabilisation of the cliffs and town frontage at Lyme Regis, providing West Dorset District Council with ecological advice. This has involved extensive ecological survey of the cliffs most of which are designated as part of the Sidmouth to West Bay SAC. As the vegetation communities for which the SAC is designated require inherently unstable conditions, and the stabilisation project is in direct conflict with this, the Ecological Impact Assessment and mitigation design has required an innovative approach, and extensive consultation with Natural England regarding the Appropriate Assessment.

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