Core Strategy - Consultation Draft

Comment ID 3562561/CSCD/1
Document Section Core Strategy - Consultation Draft Chapter 4: Area Policies CS30: Weston Urban Extension Key Diagram Weston Urban Extension View all on this section
Respondent Deleted User View all by this respondent
Response Date 19 Feb 2010
First, I support the submission by Parish (and District)Councillor Terry Porter, as does Hutton Parish Council as a whole, but wish to amplify one point he made, although it may appear minor in the broad sweep of the strategy. We accept that the lake to the north of Hutton is absolutely necessary. To its East, on the other side of Moor Lane, shown on page 144 of the draft document, is a proposed area of wetland. At a public meeting in Hutton village hall last month, the presenting officials could not specify precisely what type of wetland was envisaged, stated that this feature was not vital to the plans - in contrast to the catchment lake - and its purpose was (somewhat vaguely) conservation/ecological enhancement.

I have a specific proposal relating to page 36 of the draft document, item 3.63, dealing with "species... which have undergone severe national declines, including ... the brown hare".

The Weston airfield site, and indeed the whole Weston Urban Extension area which will be developed for residential and commercial use, contains a locally significant population of brown hares, which will be displaced by the development. Some of these animals range up to the northern village fence of Hutton, across fields often sub-optimal hare habitat of heavily grazed and poached horse pasture. Rather than including the currently undefined "wetland", the opportunity (and necessity?) arises to take positive action to conserve at least some of displaced hare population. As follows:-

Using some of the soil excavated from the lake, create a raised conservation strip, not more that a metre high, and a minimum of five, maximum of ten metres wide, along the southern boundary of the west - east cross rhyne to the north of the proposed wetland. Planted with rough grasses, native field plants and some shrubs/trees designed to be ideal hare breeding habitat, this would also support populations of smaller mammals, birds and invertebrates, It would provide specifically targeted CONSERVATION GAINS which are not evident in the present "wetland" proposal, which should be dropped.

As a matter of interest, Hutton Parish Council has recently purchased a 2.42 acre field directly adjacent to the village fence due south of the "wetland" area. Following consultation with parishioners, this is being developed as a nature reserve, wildflower meadow and community orchard, the 180 metre plus northern boundary of which will be planted with mixed native trees and shrubs. We should be happy to co-operate with North Somerset in furthering its aspirations on Nature Conservation.