Bat Mitigation Class Licence

(previously the Bat Low Impact Class Licence)

The Bat Mitigation Class Licence (previously the Bat Low Impact Class Licence) was brought into effect in order to streamline the licensing process for bat roosts of low conservation status. Developers have been hindered by lengthy delays and mounting costs for years and the introduction of the BMCL is an attempt by Natural England to improve public relations throughout the industry.

The BMCL avoids an individual site licence and allows for a Registered Consultant (an ecologist who has earned recognition within the sector and undertaken specialist BMCL training) to register individual sites under the scheme and allow disturbance and capture of bats or damage and destruction of bat roosts, but only if your actions affect no more than:

  • 3 roosts of low conservation importance (known as ‘low conservation significant roosts’), such as feeding roosts, day or night roosts or transitional or occasional roosts
  • 3 of the more common bat species in small numbers at a roost (includes pipistrelle, soprano pipistrelle, brown long-eared, whiskered, Brandt’s, Daubenton’s and Natterer’s)

There are also now 4 annexes to CL21 (A,B,C&D). Consultants must meet the criteria for the annex that’s right for the location and the bat species present.

Natural England will only consider registration on sites that have already received full planning permission, therefore the process of applying for registration cannot be started until after determination. Following determination, a Registered Consultant must register the site with Natural England a minimum of three weeks (i.e. 15 working days) and no more than a maximum of twelve weeks prior to undertaking any licensable works. In addition survey data used to inform the licence must be collected from the current and/or most recent optimal season (i.e. update bat surveys may be required if the project is delayed). The licence, once granted, is legally binding and the Terms and Conditions of the licence must be complied with.

Where the above are achieved, “low impact” works can begin.

How Burton Reid can help

We are able to progress BMCL registration on your behalf under Annex B and D and have a Registered Consultant within our highly skilled team. As such we can afford you costs savings and avoid some of the time delays associated with individual site licences

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