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Please check the Chichester District Council website for regular updates: https://www.chichester.gov.uk/latestnews
Butterfly Conservation Project
Saving the Wood White butterfly in the South East
The Wood White butterfly is one of the UK’s rarest and most threatened species. In South East England there is just one surviving colony – on the Surrey/Sussex border.
The woodlands, edges and verges between Chiddingfold, Dunsfold and Plaistow form a key area, being home to 20% of the Wood White’s entire UK distribution.
- Increase the distribution and abundance, and robustness of this last remaining Wood White colony in South East England;
- Increase recording and monitoring of Wood White and other butterflies in this landscape;
- Inspire a long-term legacy of habitat creation and enhancement;
- Deliver valuable research on habitat creation and the dispersal and colonisation potential of Wood White.
How we will do this
The project will create a total of 3km of new butterfly-friendly wildflower strips across this west Weald landscape. We will target woods, edges and fields around and between existing Wood White areas. We’ll work with the Woodland Trust, National Trust, Forestry England, private landowners and garden owners to achieve this. Kew and the Millennium Seed Bank at Wakehurst will help us to develop a seed mix of crucial plants. They will also provide training in seed collection and care.Ground will be prepared by specialist contractors. Volunteers can also get involved by collecting and sowing seed, propagating and plug-planting, and delivering practical habitat enhancements. Then the volunteers can help to monitor the butterfly areas to provide valuable feedback on their success and value.
How to get involved
The Project Officer from Butterfly Conservation would love to hear from anyone who wishes to get involved with the project. You could help manage and create Wood White habitat on volunteer tasks, help with seed collection or propagation, or learn more about butterflies and bees on training workshops. Equally you may have a garden you wish to enhance for pollinators, or own some land where the project can get involved. Please contact the Parish Clerk for contact details: 01403 871 652 | email@example.com. Work for the Wood White butterfly will also help many other invertebrates and have knock-on positive effects on the local biodiversity in general. You can be added to a mailing list to get invites to events, or join Facebook page Wealden Wood Whites.
About the Wood White butterfly
This charismatic little butterfly looks similar to our more common white butterflies but behaves in a quite unique way. It has a light, gentle flight over the tops of grasses whilst it looks for the special food plants (Vetches) on which it relies. Its courtship ritual is a delicate hypnotic ritual of waved antennae, clapping and even licking – a wonder to watch!
This rapidly declining species used to be found across much of southern England and into eastern Wales but its distribution has declined by more than 65% since the 1970’s.
The project will deliver an inspiring and engaging programme of habitat creation and enhancement that will help many rare and threatened butterflies and moths. Our project will aim to help the following key species...
- Wood White
- Grizzled Skipper
- White Admiral
- Wider countryside butterflies including Small Tortoiseshell and Small Copper
- Ananiafunebris(White-spotted Sable moth)
- Coleopherawockeella(Betony Case-bearer)
- Drab Loopermoth
- Bees and other pollinators
- Grass Snake
- Common Lizard
We can monitor the butterfly and moth populations as the project progresses, also bees and other wildlife. Bee and Reptile experts will offer training for volunteers. IN addition to saving the Wood White in this landscape, the project will enhance our understanding of the Wood White and its dispersal and colonisation ability. This will provide valuable information that can help to save the Wood White across the UK. We also hope the project will inspire much more habitat creation, both locally and further afield.
When will this happen?...
The project will begin in October 2019 and run for three years (to 2022).
Our project is being delivered in partnership with…
- Kew and the Millennium Seed Bank
- The Forestry England
- The National Trust
- The Woodland Trust
- The Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust
Road Safety within Plaistow
The Parish Council will make a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) application to West Sussex County Council (WSCC) to extend the 30mph speed limit along Rickman’s Lane. TROs are legal documents that enable WSCC, as the local highway authority, to manage traffic in the County. TROs are prioritised on safety, traffic conditions, environment and economy and how people will benefit from the new proposals.
Rickman’s Lane does not benefit from adequate pavements and/or street lighting. Consequently, the Parish Council is concerned for the safety of school children, who walk along Rickman’s Lane to and from the Bushfield bus stop and other non-vehicular road users, due to the speed of traffic entering and leaving the village.
The Parish Council instructed SW Transport Planning Ltd to commission a speed survey along Rickman’s Lane. The data shows that the 85th percentile is 41.8mph (northbound) and 43.8mph (southbound), along the part of the road frequently used by school children. The ‘85th percentile’ speed represents the speed value covering 85% of traffic, i.e. it is the speed which is only exceeded by 15% of vehicles. The data results can be found below.
The Parish Council will apply to extend the 30mph speed limit to the Plaistow ‘please drive slowly through the village’ sign along Rickman’s Lane.
The Parish wide Public Consultation (June 2021) demonstrated good support for this proposal. The full Consultation results can be found on the Consultation webpage; however the specific results for Rickman's Lane are above. In addition, the Parish Council wrote to residents living along Rickman's Lane and invited their comments and experience of living along the road to guide the application process.
If you would like to contact the Parish Council in relation to this issue, please contact the Clerk, Catherine: firstname.lastname@example.org
School Safety Zone
The Public Consultation undertaken in June 2021 highlighted support for the following traffic calming measures within Plaistow village:
- Changing the speed limit to 20mph along Loxwood Road, Plaistow (past the shop, village hall, school, and church) – consultation results: 65% very supportive | 13% supportive (78%)
- Better signage that Loxwood Road is unsuitable for HGVs – consultation results: 64% very supportive | 8% supportive (72%)
- Additional school safety signage within the village - consultation results: 56% very supportive | 5% supportive (61%)
- Additional speed signage within the village – consultation results: 43% very supportive | 13% supportive (56%)
- Safety crossing at the three-way junction by the church/Sun Inn pub - consultation results: 42% very supportive | 8% supportive (50%) *
*When the safety crossing result (level of support) was further ‘interrogated’, whereas 50% overall were supportive, this rose to 72% of those aged over 71 and 56% among the under 55s’ who may be more likely to have younger families. Certainly, of those who have children under 18, 62% of respondents were supportive. Itmust also be noted that the typeof safety crossing was not specified in the consultation, which may have influenced how people answered. However, the type of crossing being considered is a lollipop person at the three-way junction at key times during the day when families are arriving/collecting on the ‘school run’. Please refer to some of the pictures below, which illustrate this matter.
On 9th February 2022, the Parish Council resolved to instructed SW Transport Planning Ltd to commission a speed survey within Plaistow. This took place in May 2022 and the results are published below. In addition, the Council resolved to pursue the following TROs: -
a. Changing the speed limit to 20mph along Loxwood Road, Plaistow
b. Additional school safety signage within Plaistow
c. Additional speed signage within Plaistow
d. Safety crossing at the three-way junction by the church/Sun Inn pub
The Council agreed that it would be inappropriate to pursue a TRO application for signage stating that Loxwood Road is unsuitable for HGVs, as there is no suitable alternative route within the area to redirect this traffic. However, ensuring that these vehicles are clearly made aware of the presence of the schools, a crossing point (and having a safe place and way to cross the road) will help to keep families safe on their way to and from school. Likewise, the Council noted that the public consultation results did not support an official one-way system within Plaistow.
On 14th December 2021, County Councillor Duncton, the police, WSCC Highways, representatives from the School and Preschool and Cllr. Bushell attended a Road Safety Walk About at 08:45 to witness the various traffic concerns within Plaistow at this time of the day.
Cllr. Duncton, the police and Highways are now aware of many of these issues and will therefore be able to support the Parish Council’s applications when submitted.
Highways advised that in order to consider reducing the speed limit to 20mph, the speed survey results would need to demonstrate an existing average speed of 24mph or less.
The average speeds at the four survey locations varied from 21.4mph to 26.9 mph. There were only two results over the guideline target of 24 mph; these were eastbound on Dusnfold Road (26.9mph) and westbound on Loxwood Road near the Plaistow Stores (24.8mph). However, the overall average for all locations was 23.2 mph indicating that the case for a 20mph speed limit could be supported.
The Parish Council is now in the process of liaising with the various departments at WSCC to put in train these measures, which are supported by the community and by the data collected. The Parish Council is working with Plaistow & Kirdford Primary School and Plaistow Pre School. Updates will be provided during Council meetings and published within the minutes.
Community Speed Watch
Parish Council is looking to invigorate support and participation in the
Community Speed Watch (CSW) initiative which has been set up in the Parish. The
CSW team is currently active along Plaistow Road in Ifold, which has recently
benefited from the Parish Council’s successful TRO application to change the
speed limit from 40mph to 30mph. The aim is to extend the CSW team’s remit to
Plaistow. If you would like to find out about the training and commitment of
joining the CSW initiative, please contact the Clerk, Catherine via email: email@example.com