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Nature conservation

Potential designation of a Special Protection Area (SPA) at Sherwood Forest

Nationally important sites

Locally important sites

Protected species

There is a wide variety of natural habitats within our landscape. The protection and enhancement of these habitats with their plant and animal species are guided by environmental legislation and through policies being developed in the new Local Plan.

Potential designation of a Special Protection Area (SPA) at Sherwood Forest

The Sherwood Forest area is currently being considered as a future Special Protection Area (SPA), which is a site of European importance. It is being looked at as part of a UK-wide review led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affaris (DEFRA).

SPAs are designated to protect rare and vulnerable bird populations and their habitats; in this case, Nightjar and Woodlark.

Although the area is under review, Natural England has advised us that we should take a pdf icon risk-based approach [968kb] towards development in order to avoid or reduce its impact upon the protected birds and their habitats.

Our approach is set out in the following documents:

Nationally important sites

There are six sites in our district that have been labelled as Sites of Special Scientific Intrerest (SSSI). These are protected sites which have significant nature conservation value.

The SSSIs (and other sites mentioned on this page) can be viewed using our interactive mapping service.

Policies NE12 & NE14 of the Mansfield District Local Plan 1998 (Chapter 4 - Environment) apply to development that would affect an SSSI area.

Locally important sites

Mansfield has many sites of local nature conservation importance. There are over 80 Local Wildlife Sites and nine Local Nature Reserves in the district.

In addition to nature conservation, sites can also be designated for their geological interest. These sites are known as Local Geological Sites. There are 13 in the district.

Policy NE14 of the Mansfield District Local Plan 1998 relates to development that would affect these areas. Sites which contain important areas of heathland are covered specifically by Policy NE15.

Protected species

A number of species are protected by national and european laws. The presence of protected species, such as bats, in the district is taken into account in planning applications.

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