To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information her Department holds on the application and interpretation of provisions in the Habitats Directive on bats inhabiting church premises in other EU member states.
10 June 2015
Whilst we do not hold any information about how other Member States apply or interpret the provisions in the Habitats Directive in relation to bats in churches, the Government understands the problems that the presence of bats can cause.
To assist churches, Defra has funded research to identify techniques that can be used to deter bats from sensitive areas of churches, the results of which were published in March 2014. English Heritage is now funding a project trialling the techniques identified by this research in several churches to develop a toolkit and advice pack. A bid for Heritage Lottery funding to help pay for the implementation of this toolkit is also being prepared.