swimming newt

UK: In what Network Rail says is an industry first, Natural England has granted the infrastructure manager a licence for the relocation of great crested newts which covers the whole of the Eastern Region.

This removes the need for individual licence applications covering routine work, and is expected to reduce delays to engineering works.

‘This licence will help us strike the balance between helping lineside wildlife to thrive, whilst allowing essential railway upgrade work to get underway’, said Hamish Critchell-Ward, Environmental Manager for Network Rail’s Eastern Region, on August 9.

The licence was granted following a successful trial on the Midland Main Line Upgrade last year. The project is being carried out in collaboration with NatureSpace, which works with conservationists, industry experts and developers to understand, grow and protect newt habitats.

‘It’s great that Natural England have been so supportive of this initiative, and we’re really looking forward to working with our partners at NatureSpace in an approach that’s more streamlined and results in more habitat creation’, said Critchell-Ward.