18th November 2020

Clarification on Pest Control

Following the Wildlife Protection Policy statement adopted by the Environment and Planning Committee last week and subsequent press coverage, the Town Council would like to clarify certain key points.

The resolution notes that, as far as the law allows, the Town Council will not give consent to the hunting or culling of animals on Town Council land and will seek to employ non-lethal methods of rodent control. However, the Town Council has a legal duty under the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 to monitor the presence of rodents on its land, and to act in the event of an infestation, including a duty to destroy them.

The resolution passed is consistent with this, though as the Town Council has a proactive approach to waste management on its lands, this has meant that instances of rodents being a problem are very rare.  It by no means states that the Town Council will fail to act responsibly in the event of an infestation.

Whilst we understand the concerns that certain inflammatory articles may have caused, we would like to reassure the public that we take our legal responsibility very seriously, and will always act to safeguard public health.

The Policy Statement was passed in support the Town Council’s positions on Biodiversity and the Ecological Emergency, and in response to the devastating impact of human activity on wildlife in general as highlighted in the 2019 State of Nature Report. We hope very much that the press will show equal interest in these primary elements of the Resolution.

If you’d like to find out more about this resolution and the Town Council’s commitment to tackling the Ecological and Climate Emergencies, visit our dedicated news categories:

News stories relating to the Ecological Emergency

News stories relating to the Climate Emergency