Place Services’ Principal Ecologist Sue Hooton, liaised closely with the applicant’s agent and Natural England staff in preparing a project level Appropriate Assessment to meet Habitats Regulations requirements for Rochford DC. The planning application was for RSPB Wallasea Island Wild Coast passenger ferry infrastructure on the Essex coast, immediately adjacent to the internationally designated Crouch and Roach Estuaries Special Protection Area and Ramsar site.
Sue has 30 years’ experience as a Local Authority ecologist and is considered to be a regional expert in preparing Habitats Regulations Assessments (HRA) for Local Authorities.
Rochford District Council planning team requested support in preparing the HRA report within a tight deadline for a scheduled planning committee meeting. The resulting Appropriate Assessment (AA) was provided on time and when submitted to Natural England for consultation, the formal comments agreed with the conclusion of the AA. The mitigation measures and monitoring will need to be secured as conditions of planning consent.
The support of an ecologist with planning & HRA expertise provided Rochford DC secured legal compliance and confidence that sufficient information was available for the assessment of likely impacts for consultation with Natural England.