Landscape & Ecology
Enhancing the landscape by:
- Providing an attractive a landscape consistent with Airport safety requirements.
Defining the effects of Airport activity on local ecology, conserving plants and wildlife.
Avoiding ecological disturbance both during normal Airport operations and any development.
Setting aside other land as a compensatory alternative where new development takes ecologically sensitive land.
Carrying out ecological assessments in consultation with neighbouring local authorities and conservation groups when considering future development.
The Airport site covers a total area of 330 hectares and is located adjacent to rural areas and close to residential communities. In addition to the operational areas, there is 100 hectares of land off-site owned by the Airport Company. This includes a Site of Special Scientific Interest, coppiced woodland and farmland incorporating a listed farmhouse. Two brooks flow through the airfield: Low Brook and Hatchford Brook, which drain into the River Blythe. The Airport also owns land adjacent to our site, which we provide rent free to Bickenhill Parish Council for use as an amenity for local people.
A combination of soft and hard landscaping has been used to improve the quality of the landscape on the Airport site and will continue to be implemented as development takes place. All new planting uses mature trees and shrubs to give immediate positive visual impact. In airside areas strict guidelines apply to the management of the grasslands bordering runways and other operational areas, and consequently opportunities for landscape and wildlife enhancement are influenced by safety requirements for aircraft. Such management programmes include bird pest control and limiting bird habitats (e.g. Leylandii); together these reduce the potential for bird strikes. However, we believe in providing as attractive a landscape as possible consistent with Civil Aviation Authority requirements.