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Date issued: 17 December 2019
Colchester Borough Council is taking steps to ensure a protected hedgerow in Salary Brook, which was home to some highly endangered species, is fully replaced after it was wrongly removed by developers.
Around 170 metres of hedgerow, which was on council-owned land and housed species such as dormice, was ripped up by developers carrying out work related to building new student accommodation in the area.
The council is now requiring the developer to ensure the hedgerow is replaced along with any earthworks needed to support it, as well as putting further legal protection in place to help prevent this happening again.
Cllr Mark Cory, Leader of Colchester Borough Council, said: “The loss of this hedgerow basically equates to environmental and ecological vandalism. Not only was this hedgerow protected but it played a key role in the area’s ecosystem.
“We are committed to improving and protecting our environment and as soon as we were aware of the issue our officers started an investigation into how this happened.
“The developers working on the site have accepted responsibility and we are taking steps to ensure they replace it and make certain this doesn’t happen again. We have also reported the issue to Essex Police’s Wildlife Crimes team to investigate.”