Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust and RSPB call for public to say no to 3,500 houses being built on legally protected wildlife site
A proposed development to build a super-peninsula with 3,500 houses and a marine hub at Tipner West in Portsmouth Harbour, would destroy legally protected habitat that is vital to local wildlife, if it gets the go ahead.
Members of the public are being invited by Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust and the RSPB to register their objections to the development and make their voices heard during Portsmouth City Council’s draft Local Plan consultation period, which is now open and will run until 31 October.
If Portsmouth City Council allocate land for the ‘super-peninsula’ option at Tipner West, the wildlife charities say that the equivalent of 50 football pitches of legally protected saltmarsh, mudflats and tidal creeks, and the equivalent of a further five football pitches of protected coastal land, used as high-tide roosts for wintering birds, would be lost forever.
Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust and the RSPB are working together to fight the development at Tipner West, which is already legally protected as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, Special Protection Area and a Ramsar Site in recognition of the high value of site for wildlife.
Earlier this year, more than 24,000 people joined RSPB and Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust in signing a petition opposing the super-peninsula, telling Portsmouth City Council #DontGoThere.
The wildlife charities are now calling on members of the public, either local or from further afield, to use their quick and simple online platform to object to the super-peninsula proposals in the Local Plan consultation, which the council must consider before approving or rejecting the plan.
Nick Bruce-White, RSPB Operations Manager said, “The vast expanses of mudflats at Tipner West and threatened coastal land provide vital habitat relied on by many species, including dark bellied brent geese, dunlin and black-tailed godwit.
“Not only that, but Tipner West is also a great escape for local people to connect with nature and take a moment out from their busy lives – greatly benefiting the physical and mental health of those who visit.
“We are outraged at the possibility of building on such an important wildlife site. We strongly encourage people to make their objections heard and fill in our e-action form. Every voice counts in making Portsmouth City Council hear this incredibly important message. Together we can make a difference and speak for wildlife by saying no to the super-peninsula development at Tipner West.”
Debbie Tann, Chief Executive of Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust said, ‘’Portsmouth’s super-peninsula development proposal is frankly unacceptable in the context of the climate and nature crisis that we face. The level of nature destruction this could cause locally is unprecedented and furthermore, it will set a dangerous precedent that could open the floodgates for concreting over legally protected sites across the country.
“This consultation is one of our last opportunities to make our voice heard, we must draw a line in the sand and stop the decline of nature before it is too late. Let’s reject nature’s destruction and create a wilder future for Portsmouth and for all of us.”
To register your objection to the housing development on Tipner West before the consultation closes on 31 October, please go to the RSPB and Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust’s online platform: https://wtru.st/portsmouth-local-plan
For more information on Tipner West go to: www.rspb.org.uk/our-work/casework/cases/tipner-west/
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About the RSPB
The RSPB is the UK’s largest nature conservation charity, inspiring everyone to give nature a home. Together with our partners, we protect threatened birds and wildlife so our towns, coast and countryside will teem with life once again. We play a leading role in BirdLife International, a worldwide partnership of nature conservation organisations. RSPB website: www.rspb.org.uk/about-the-rspb/
About Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust
Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust want to see nature recovering, wildlife returning and ecosystems restored in our counties by 2030. With the support of our 26,000 members, we want to see 1 in 4 people on nature’s side and connecting with wildlife, becoming part of Team Wilder. We are also working to transform at least a third of land and sea into wilder places where nature is recovering by 2030. We will do this by expanding our nature reserves, ensuring land outside them is working for wildlife and restoring missing species.
We need this rapid, positive action to tackle the climate and ecological crises and to create a wilder future for us all.
We’re part of the UK-wide movement of 46 Wildlife Trusts, all standing up for the natural world. Together we are the nation’s most active and influential nature conservation partnership, protecting wildlife in every part of the British Isles. Each Trust works within its local community to inspire people and bring about change. Discover and protect wildlife on your doorstep with Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust: www.hiwwt.org.uk
For further information and to arrange an interview
Please contact: EngMediaEnquiries@rspb.org.uk or Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, Sienna Somers, Policy and Advocacy Manager - Sienna.Somers@hiwwt.org.uk
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) is a registered charity.
In England and Wales, no: 207076.
In Scotland, no: SC037654.
Last Updated: Wednesday 6 October 2021