Bats, the Law and Planning

All British bats are fully protected under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981 (as amended) and The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010.

This legislation makes it an offence to destroy, damage or block access to a bat roost, or to deliberately or recklessly disturb, injure or kill any UK bat. For more information visit the Bat Conservation Trust's Bats and the Law page.

Bats in the house?
Certain bat species will frequently roost in houses, often without the knowledge of the occupier! Sometimes they are found within the living area of the house; in this situation the householder should contact the Bat Helpline, and we will arrange for someone to attend and remove the bat(s). 

In Hampshire the Helpline is run by the Bat Conservation Trust - call 0345 1300 228.

However if the bat(s) are in the roof cavity, loft or wall cavity they cannot be removed except under licence by Natural England. Further advice is available from Natural England, or please see the following webpages from the Bat Conservation Trust which may be usful:
You are always welcome to contact the Hampshire Bat Group for help with bat issues, but please be aware that with our limited resources we do not undertake survey work where developments are concerned. It should also be noted that, as a charity, we do not perform commercial surveys to support planning applications, as this would compromise our independence and our ability to provide impartial advice. For this you will need to contract and Ecological Consultant - please use the Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management's Professional Directory to contact a suitable consultant.

Do you know of a bat roost in danger?
Further to their legal protection, all bat roosts are strictly protected under UK planning policy. If you are aware of a bat roost which is threatened by development activities, please contact the Bat Helpline (see above). You may also wish to consider contacting the Hampshire Police Wildlife Liaison Officer, who can be contacted via 0845 045 4545, or your local planning authority's Planning Ecologist. If you think that  a wildlife crime has been or is about to be committed, contact the police on 101, quoting the police Standard Operating Procedure "Operation Bat".