Wildlife trust's worries over HS2 effect on environment

By Antony Clay | 01/09/2017

Wildlife trust's worries over HS2 effect on environment
Liz Ballard, CEO of the Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust

THE chief of a wildlife trust has voiced her concerns about the effect the controversial HS2 rail scheme could have on the natural environment.

She said the high speed rail route could create corridors unable to support wildlife.

Liz Ballard, CEO of the Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust, said both possible route options for the controversial scheme — the now chosen so-called M18 route through Aston, Bramley, Mexborough and the Dearne valley, or the original proposed route via Meadowhall — would both have negative impacts on the natural environment.

Ms Ballard said the trust, which runs the Centenary Riverside reserve in Templeborough and Blackburn Meadows in Masbrough, as well as projects across Rotherham, said: “We are concerned with HS2.

“We ask what the impact on nature is with HS2.”

Ms Ballard said the route would create “sterile corridors” across the landscape as areas around the track would have to be kept clear and this would impact on the movement and habitats for wildlife.

She said that a mapping exercise assessed how many important nature sites would be sliced through by the rail line and both options had serious impacts.

Miss Ballard said: “From a wildlife point of view the Rotherham (M18) route is better than the previous (Meadowhall) route, but not massively better.

“The Meadowhall route did go through more ancient woodland.

“If this happens we have to get something from it for wildlife and the community as well, such as HS2 providing access to green space.”

Ms Ballard said that HS2 could be asked to open up green sites or redirect paths to nature spots as part of any development plan.

The Advertiser asked the Department for Transport for a statement, but a response was not received.


The fact you are here means you are interested in what goes on in your town.

We want to continue holding local authorities to account, attending court and council meetings, as well as providing breaking news, competitions and offers – but it costs money. Online advertising does not cover costs, therefore we feel the need to ask for your help in ensuring we can provide the best possible coverage, online and in our printed products.
For as little as £1, you can support the Rotherham Advertiser – and it only takes a minute.
Click here to support local news.


Spotted something we should know about?

Call our Newsdesk on 01709 768146
Or email newsdesk@rotherhamadvertiser.co.uk
Message us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheRotherhamAdvertiser/