Christopher Chope – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Christopher Chope on 2016-02-02.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress has been made by her Department on developing a toolkit for effective and safe management of bats in churches as recommended in the University of Bristol report on Management of bats in churches, a pilot, published in January 2015.

Rory Stewart

The Government has invested significant resources into research and development to assess how we can reduce the impact caused by bats in churches. This has included a three year research project that concluded in 2013, as well as a pilot project led by Historic England that focused on churches with significant bat issues. Natural England is currently creating a licensing framework to provide the mechanism through which the impact of bats will be controlled in churches.

A partnership of five organisations, including the Church of England and Natural England, is seeking Heritage Lottery Funding for a five year project to support the creation of a national support network for churches that have bat related issues. The outcome of the bid for funding will be known in March.