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Wildlife areas highlight borough’s environmental vision.

1:58 pm, Thursday, 6th October 2022 - 2 years ago


TWO wild and birdlife areas created next to prime commercial land by North East Lincolnshire Council are examples of how industrial development and nature can thrive side-by-side.

As residents are being encouraged to give their views on the review of the borough’s Local Plan, a key planning document which helps shape and guide future development, the council is highlighting where work to meet its key development priorities is already happening.

The review itself is now active – offering people the opportunity to comment on how the borough develops. Residents are invited to go to drop-in sessions to speak with an officer about the local plan, with additional sessions having been added in evenings and weekends.

Details of these are:

  • Monday 10 October, Immingham Library, 9am – 5pm
  • Tuesday 11 October, Grimsby Library, 8.30am – 5.30pm
  • Wednesday 12 October, Cleethorpes Library, 8.30am – 5.30pm
  • Saturday 15 October, Grimsby library, 9am – 1pm
  • Tuesday 18 October, Cleethorpes Library, 6pm – 8pm
  • Friday 21 October, Civic Centre hub, Immingham, 6pm – 8pm
  • Saturday 22 October, Immingham Library, 9am – 1pm
  • Tuesday 25 October, Grimsby Town Hall, 6pm – 8pm
  • Saturday 29 October, Cleethorpes Library, 9am – 1pm

You can have your say online at Residents who can’t get online can call 01472 324272 to arrange for a copy of the questionnaire to be posted out to them.

Every local authority must have its own adopted Local Plan, which sets out future development needs and aspirations. These plans must be updated regularly and that’s what North East Lincolnshire Council is now doing.

One of the areas of focus is the environment and the review includes details of how the council intends to meet new responsibilities outlined in the Government’s Environment Act. These include measures to:

  • Make effective use of land;
  • Respond to climate change;
  • Increase biodiversity;
  • Use natural resources prudently;
  • Minimise waste and pollution.

Successful examples are already up and running locally, as part of the South Humber Industrial Investment Plan, (SHIIP) – a multi-million-pound industrial project near Immingham. 

Two major wetland sites – Cress Marsh and Novartis Ings (pictured) – are now offering mitigation land for commercial developers if they want to build nearby. They have been a massive success in attracting and protecting wildlife. Still in its infancy, Novartis Ings has seen more than 500 Curlews visit already – the highest count here since the 1990s. And the more established 35-acre award-winning Cress Marsh has seen more than 81 different bird species visit, with protected species including whooper swan, tufted duck, teal, redshank, pink-footed goose, peregrine, little egret, lapwing, greylag, and curlew.

These two mitigation sites were the first of their kind in Europe – companies that want to develop along the Humber banks must source and create offset wildlife areas as part of strict planning requirements.  This can take months in the planning, with sometimes lengthy delays. These two sites offer companies such land, ready-made.

North East Lincolnshire Council leader Cllr Philip Jackson says these solutions to industrial problems highlight the innovative way the authority can look at all kinds of development – working with partners to ensure the natural environment can be enhanced.

“To develop and prosper we need to find ways in which we can build a stronger economy whilst developing stronger communities. This can be achieved if we look at development as a whole – providing good quality homes and business opportunities alongside our strong green agenda. This is what our Local Plan review will set out to achieve,” said Cllr Jackson.

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