For general information about bats, please visit the website of the Bat Conservation Trust (BCT). Also on the Bat Conservation Trust website you will find information on the following:
- Bat Surveys – Good Practice Guidelines
- Best practice information on roosts
- A quick guide to Bats and the Law
- A guide for roost owners called Living with bats
- More information on Bats, Buildings and Development
Where development proposals may affect structures or trees where bats may be present, it is essential that bat surveys are thorough enough to confirm the presence or likely absence of bats. While this could be seen as causing a delay and extra expense during the planning application, it is far better to be thorough before building starts. If bats are found during construction, works must stop and this can be far more costly than a thorough survey.
The presence of bats will rarely mean a development cannot go ahead but it will likely affect the development. There may need to be an alteration to the timing of works to leave the bats undisturbed at critical times and also to ensure that there is provision for bats to continue to use the building. The design might also need to be altered to accommodate the bat species present.
All developers should read Planning Advice Note 17: Bats, buildings and development before submitting applications that may affect bats.
Householders can also use this checklist-flow chart chart to provide guidance on when a bat survey is likely to be required.
Sites that require a survey: The National Park Authority will determine whether a bat survey is required for a development as it is a legal requirement for the planning authority to assess possible impact on bats. The need for a survey should be identified early in the design and planning process. Please note that as bats are active during the summer months, there are likely to be seasonal constraints on when surveys can be undertaken – plan for bat activity surveys to be undertaken between May and mid-September.
Guidelines on bat mitigation have been produced by English Nature (now Natural England). Please note that licensing arrangements are different in Wales to those in England.
See more information on bats in the National Park.