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.
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.