Ecological Impact Assessment - Torr Quarry
Client: Aggregate Industries Ltd
Location: Near Frome, Somerset
The assessment of the ecological effects of the deepening of Aggregates Industries Ltd’s existing consented limestone quarry at Torr, nr Frome, Somerset encompassed a wide range of habitats including the adjacent Asham Woods SSSI ancient semi-natural woodland, and significant areas of scrub, calcareous grassland, hedge, rock exposures and a reservoir lake situated within the quarry boundary.
The assessment included in-depth botanical surveys including a bryophyte survey and faunal surveys for invertebrates, reptiles, common dormice, badgers and bats. The surveys recorded a total of 108 mosses and liverworts, 244 species of invertebrates including a previously unknown colony of small blue butterflies, a small population of grass snakes, seven species of bats comprising serotine, Daubenton’s bats, whiskered bats, noctule, common and soprano pipistrelle, and a total of nine badger setts occupied by two entirely separate clans. Consideration was given to the status of all the habitats and species on a local, regional and national scale. Where appropriate, mitigation measures were built into the scheme design to avoid or ameliorate the potential for negative effects.
The application has yet to be determined. However, in order to safeguard the principal wildlife habitats within the Torr Quarry landholding complex, detailed technical advice was provided by AEcol in relation to new habitat creation, focussing principally on limestone grassland.