Biodiversity guidance for planning applicants

Local information requirement, Biodiversity Guidance

Lewisham Biodiversity Action Plan

Lewisham original Biodiversity Action Plans were written in a document called ‘A Natural Renaissance for Lewisham’. The original document was written in 2007 and set out the Borough’s aspirations for the immediate future regarding the conservation of nature across the Borough.  Progress between 2007-2011 can be found on the new BARS website or you can have a look at the summary spreadsheet produced by the partnership.

‘A Natural Renaissance for Lewisham‘ was updated in 2015 and ratified by Mayor and Cabinet in March 2016. The partnership’s past achievements can be viewed below.

We produce summary sheets of all the achievements of the partnership and this will be updated quarterly.

Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership.

The Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership was established in 1999 to develop an action Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership plan for the Borough’s wildlife and natural environment. Presently, the Partnership consists of Lewisham Council, Glendale Managed Services, The Environment Agency, The Creekside Education Trust, Groundwork South East London, Greater London Authority, London Wildlife Trust, Horniman Museum and Gardens and,  most importantly a range of local groups and individuals.  All these groups have an interest in conserving and enhancing Lewisham’s Biodiversity. The work of the Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership has operated in tandem with that of the London Biodiversity Partnership and has taken a considered approach in order that Lewisham’s Biodiversity Action Plan be visionary, pragmatic, achievable and inclusive. The group meets 4 times a year to discuss their achievements and issues that may have arisen.  A copy of the minutes of these meetings can be found below.

Lewisham Biodiversity partnership – minutes & meetings

The next Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership will be held on  12th January 2021 at 4pm. Location/Online TBC  Jess Kyle if you would like to get involved.

Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership minutes from 23rd September 2020

Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership minutes from Monday 20th January 2020

For previous meeting minutes not listed here, please email Jess Kyle who would be happy to send them to you.

July – September 2020 Achievements

Kenneth White Legacy Award will fund the creation/improvement of two ponds, creation of two wildlife areas at allotments, 24 bird boxes, 6 bat boxes, 1 hedgehog house and 8 insect hotels!
Mayor and Cabinet approved the declaration of Grove Park Nature Reserve as a statutory Local Nature Reserve     
Fourth Reserve was visited by Kabir Khan – Youth Ambassador for RSPB who was impressed with the site and advised of ideas for increasing biodiversity
Friends of Garthorne Road Nature Reserve organised a very successful bake-off event 

Adult eel seen in the River Ravensbourne (photo by Mike Keogh)

April – June 2020 Achievements

As you know there were no events or volunteering in the past few months so this update will be slightly different from the usual email you receive from us.

Thank you to everyone who sent us their sightings and experiences during lockdown. It was really great to hear that you all managed to keep in contact with nature by going on walks, picking litter, pulling Himalayan Balsam or even pickling walnuts! We also noticed that there was an increase in slow worm, swift and raptor (hobby, peregrine, kestrel and even red kite) sightings which is great news. Please find attached an excel sheet with all the sightings we received for this quarter

And now, without further ado some of the highlights for the quarter:

Mayor and Cabinet approved Lewisham’s Parks and Open Spaces Strategy 2020-25 (attached).

Wisdom of Surgeons or Herb Sophia appeared again on Sue Godfrey Nature Park this year – last spotted there over 25 years ago (photo on Twitter)!

Emperor dragonfly laying eggs ©Nick Baelz

Mandarin Ducks and Little Grebes were enjoying the lake in Beckenham Place Park along with many dragonflies and damselflies (photo of an Emperor Dragonfly, courtesy of Nick Baelz).

Cuckoo flowers were back in Mayor Park Orchard and Glendale delayed mowing till after seeds have set.

Nuthatch at Nestbox © Tom Moulton

Nuthatches were nesting for the first time in Hilly Fields (photo attached, courtesy of Tom Moulton).

January – March 2020 Achievements


October – December 2019 Achievements

Uncover Deptford Creek, the wildlife and the inspiring work of the Creekside Discovery Centre by watching this short film

Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership volunteers deliver 2148  hours’ worth of work amounting to £22,661 in last 3 winter months

Falco tinnunculus commonly known as the Kestrel recorded in Ladywell Fields in October

From October until January the Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership delivers 267 events engaging a whopping 8,287 people

An amazing 71 species of wildflower found in flower in Deptford on 1st December 2019.

The Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership Kenneth White legacy award funds the installation of 11 swift boxes at Kilmorie School

3,696m2 of biodiverse living roof implemented through the planning system this quarter

The partnership’s achievements between October 2010 – December 2019

(Please click on the thumbnail of the period you are interested in. This will bring up a larger version of the image and there you will find a link to a word document for the achievements for that quarter)

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UK Biodiversity

This page sets out the history behind the Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership and what they are doing towards Local and National Biodiversity targets. You will also find regular updates of interesting projects that our partners have carried out in the Borough along with quarterly achievements, along with ways in which you can get involved. Decade_logo


In 1992 the UK Government signed the Rio Convention and committed themselves to halting biodiversity loss.  In response to this the UK Government published the  UK Biodiversity Action Plan 1994.   This led to the production of 436 action plans between 1995 and 1999 to help many of the UK’s most threatened species recover.   A review of the UK priority species list in 2007 identified 1,150 species and 65 habitats that met the BAP criteria at UK level. For information up to March 2012 on the progress of local and national plans please visit the Biodiversity Action Recording System (BARS) website. This is an old website, but still has a lot of useful information on it.  Progress between 2007-2011 can be found on the new BARS website or you can have a look at the summary spreadsheet produced by the partnership.

Local Biodiversity Action Plans

There are 119 local biodiversity action partnerships and nine regional biodiversity that have been established across England.  This  has helped bring about a groundswell of activity and innovation to meet the challenges faced by our biodiversity.

The role of local biodiversity action plans

Local Biodiversity Action Plans (LBAP) identify priorities for biodiversity conservation at a local level.  They work to deliver agreed actions and targets for priority habitats and species and can focus on locally important wildlife and sites.  They aim to reflect the values of local people and provide a focus for local initiatives hope to further the wellbeing of their local areas.  LBAPs, including the one in Lewisham are delivered through wide local partnerships that involve wildlife organisations, local authorities, businesses and other interested parties.  More information about the achievements of LBAPs can be found at Natural England’s report, ‘The Achievements of local biodiversity partnerships in England.’The functions of LBAPs are:

    • To translate national targets for species and habitats into effective action at the local level,
    • To identify targets for species and habitats important to the local area, reflecting the values of local people,
    • To stimulate effective local partnerships to ensure programmes for biodiversity conservation are developed and maintained in the long term,
    • To raise awareness of the need for biodiversity conservation and enhancement in the local context,
    • To ensure opportunities for conservation and enhancement of biodiversity are promoted, understood and rooted in policies and decisions at the local level,
    • To provide a basis for monitoring and evaluating local action for biodiversity priorities, at both national and local levels

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8 thoughts on “Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership

  1. Hi,
    I was wondering if you could put me in contact with the relevant parties regarding speaking to someone to get advice and guidance regarding Lewisham Councils plans to build on shared communal green space attached to my building?
    Many thanks

    1. Hi Lucy,

      Please can you let me know which area of green space that you are talking about so that I can look in to this more. Once I know where this is, I can find out what is happening and who you should contact about this.

      Best wishes,


      1. THanks Jess, it’s a sort of shared garden for a block of flats at the end of Ermine Road postcode SE13 7jj it looks into Embleton road. Lucy

      2. Hi Lucy, I have had a quick look through Lewisham’s Planning pages and I can’t see anything. Are you sure that the application has gone in? The reason for looking is that there would be a planning office attached to the case and you would be able to contact them about it. You can have a look here or contact them here

        I hope this helps,


      3. Hi Jess,
        We are currently at the consultation stage. We have all written in response and are waiting to here’s back. Do you an email I can send the information to? I am hoping there is something that can be gone to save the green space.
        Many thanks

  2. Hi,
    I was wondering who I could contact/talk to about Lewisham councils plans to build on communal green space that my building shares in Ladywell. I am looking for advice and guidance, if you send me some contact details for the relevant parties that would be great.
    Many thanks

  3. Dear Councillor Robson,Lee Oasis is a local volunteer group based at the URC chruch hall in Lee. We recycle donated furniture, bedding and clothes free to people leaving the hostels at Mayfield and Ashlee, on Burnt Ash Hill, and other disadvantaged households around Lewisham and borders referred to us by the borough’s social services, Connexions, DIP etc.We have attracted grants to buy in reconditioned cookers and fridges, and pay for PAT testing of donated kettles and microwaves, and expenses for unemployed users wanting to put something back by volunteering themselves. All our services and goods are free. We now have 73 volunteers and our van runs three times a week, picking up and dropping off bulky items that don’t fit in private cars.This year we have been refused the a32,500 Faith in Lewisham Fund grant that covers half our core expenses (diesel, insurance etc) and may have to cut back our service as evictions and homelessness rise.I have only just heard about this Locality grant. Would we qualify, and are we too late??Please advise.Best wishes, Jay Sivell (Ms) for Lee Oasis committeePS Councillor Bentley knows all about us.

    1. Dear Jay,

      I am afraid I am not the right person to answer you question on this. If you contact the Localities Officer for your area, they should be able to help. You can find information about it here

      If you want to get hold of Cllr Robson and Cllr Bentley you would have to contact them directly because they do not have acces to this blog.

      Best wishes,


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