Project Background

ADAS has been working with Woking Borough Council since 2016, in partnership with Natural England, for a pilot project which promotes the enhancement of great crested newts whilst reducing delays to major building projects. The pilot project is the first of its kind in England to deliver great crested newt conservation at the district licensing scale.

Under the current system, developers on sites with great crested newt (GCN) must carry out surveys and, if they are unable to avoid or mitigate impacts on the newts, must apply for a license to move the animals before building work can begin. In 2016 Woking Borough Council was issued an organisational license, following borough-wide survey work and the production of a local conservation plan for the GCN. The new approach provides natural environment benefits, in particular for great crested newts, whilst making a more straightforward process for developers, saving time and costs on vital building work in the Borough.

Through the use of organisational license and to achieve the environmental benefits ADAS was commissioned by Woking Borough Council to produce a five year ecological management plan and deliver it. The delivery has included the construction of multiple new ponds both lined and unlined, restoration of ponds and the construction of suitable terrestrial habitat features including hibernacula and dead hedges.

In addition, ADAS has worked with local volunteers to undertake annual monitoring to assess the effectiveness of the management plan delivery. Success in the project has meant ADAS has been awarded continuing contracts to deliver the management plan and will see the plan through to its five year completion.


Our habitat management team provides practical ecological contracting solutions for clients. Working nationally and capitalising on our UK-wide network of offices and depots, we can provide high-quality contracting solutions to a diverse client base. We provide results based outcomes for both clients and biodiversity, with innovation being at the heart of everything we do.

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Contact us at for more information.
Tel: 03330142950

GCN pilot project
Great crested newt