Housing giants to build bird nests and hedgehog highways

The Homes for Nature commitment will see a bird-nesting brick or box installed for every new home built, as well as hedgehog highways created as standard on every new development taken through planning from September 2024.

Twenty house builders, who build more than 90,000 homes a year, have signed up to the voluntary commitment.

House builders signed up to Homes for Nature
Barratt Developments Hopkins Homes
Bellway Keepmoat
Bloor Homes Miller Homes
Cala Homes Orbit Homes
Crest Nicholson Persimmon
Croudace Homes Redrow
Deanfield Homes Strata Homes
Duchy of Cornwall Taylor Wimpey
Durkan Homes Thakeham
Hayfield Homes Vistry Group

In addition to integrated nest bricks, boxes and hedgehog highways, house builders are encouraged to incorporate additional features, such as bat roosts, insect bricks and hibernacula.

Away from the home, nature-led sustainable urban drainage systems and pollinator-friendly landscaping help to make even more homes for nature on new developments.

Homes for Nature was developed by the industry-led On Site Nature Measures Working Group, convened by the Future Homes Hub, an independent organisation established to enable the new homes sector to meet the climate and environmental challenges.

The commitment is in addition to the recently implemented Biodiversity Net Gain regulations, which require all new developments to achieve 10% more wildlife.

Ed Lockhart, chief executive of the Future Homes Hub, said: “Homes for Nature is a fantastic opportunity to create many more homes for wildlife, bring people closer to nature and at the same time provide a helping hand to some much-loved and critically endangered species.”

The initiative will run until at least 2030, with annual reporting to track progress and to identify further suitable measures that could be introduced to support other wildlife.

Jo Stott, associate director Environmental Sustainability at Miller Homes and chair of the working group, said: “Nature underpins our economy, provides the food, clean air and water we all need and yet everywhere it is under intense threat.

“Through Homes for Nature we are making a small change, but that small change could create a significant benefit for nature and for the people who come to live in the communities we develop.

“At Miller Homes, making Homes for Nature is part of our sustainability strategy ‘A Better Place’, but it’s truly exciting to be doing this as part of a much bigger sector initiative. Working together we can deliver really meaningful outcomes.”

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