Housebuilder Morris is leading an initiative in partnership with the Warwickshire Wildlife Trust to bring hedgehog highways to the new Houlton community on the eastern edge of Rugby.
Morris’ development, The Beacons, will be the first in Houlton to introduce new passing points in its garden fences, ensuring that hedgehogs and other wildlife are given the freedom to amble around the available green spaces without issue.
Hedgehogs travel around one mile every night through parks and gardens in their quest to find enough food and a mate. Hedgehog ‘highways’ will be cut in the garden fences of Morris’ modern mews, semi-detached and detached properties to improve connectivity throughout the development.
Dr Deborah Wright, Hedgehog Officer at Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, said of the partnership: “It’s fantastic that Morris has decided take up the recommendations of both the Trust and Rugby Borough Council to make fencing hedgehog-friendly at the Beacons. The development sits within the Rugby Hedgehog Improvement Area, funded by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society. We work across the borough to engage communities in wildlife conservation and habitat improvements – and Morris is setting a precedent for the connectivity of green spaces for hedgehogs in the area.”
Chris Worman MBE Parks and Grounds Manager at Rugby Borough Council said: “It is great that the developers of Houlton are supporting the Hedgehog Improvement Area and adding to successful work that we are already doing across the rest of Rugby.”
Dominic Harman, regional managing director at Morris, said: “We’re delighted to be able to play our part in building much needed homes for those looking for a new place to live in the local area whilst also enabling the hedgehog population to live freely in their habitat.
“Hedgehogs can do wonders for gardens in keeping small insects and slugs at bay, which contributes greatly to the growth of plants and foliage.
“Every development we build has an ecology survey to ensure we protect the living species and contribute to their habitat as much as we can. We’re glad to be the first to partner with the Wildlife Trust to support the wonderful work they do in the area.”
Emily Wilson, Hedgehog Officer for the national Hedgehog Street campaign says: “We are really encouraged to see such interest and commitment from developers like Morris, who are doing fantastic work in creating Hedgehog Highways on their estates, allowing hedgehogs to roam through the night. Hedgehog Street, ran by the People’s Trust for Endangered Species & the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, aims to ensure that hedgehogs, the UK’s only spiny mammal, remains a common and familiar part of British life, and Morris’ work is certainly helping us to spread the word.”
The 183 new Morris homes at Houlton will also create 786 housebuilding jobs in the area and up to seven new apprenticeships in an industry lacking in skilled tradespeople.
As part of the building process, 9,000 new shrubs and trees will be planted at The Beacons and the new homes are expected to generate £235,000 in Council Tax revenue that can be used to support the local community.
At The Beacons you will find a collection of mews, semi-detached and detached 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 bedroom homes. to find out more call 07733008574 or visit their website.