Tewkesbury housing scheme will put wildflower meadow at risk

Monday 8th January 2018

Wildflower meadowWildflower meadow

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust is disappointed that the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid, has approved permission for 2,025 homes to be built at Innsworth and Twigworth. The move overturns Tewkesbury Borough Council’s refusal of the schemes.

Dr Colin Studholme, Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust’s Director of Conservation said:
“This scheme could have been very different. We suggested a green network throughout the developments, improving the site for both wildlife and the new homeowners. This is a lost opportunity to create better homes and puts a wildflower meadow of national importance at risk. The Government’s own policy stresses the importance of ‘green infrastructure’, not building houses at any cost.”

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust has objected to the Innsworth scheme because its basic design fails to ensure the long-term protection of Innsworth Meadow, a Site of Special Scientific Interest. However, the Secretary of State now says that environmental issues are not insurmountable and can be addressed through conditions. Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust does not agree.

In November Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust launched Building with Nature, a pioneering green infrastructure benchmark that has already been adopted by a number of major housing schemes in the county. The Building with Nature project aims to demonstrate that building new homes can also deliver environmental benefits, improving places for people and wildlife.