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Habitat works at Lincoln skate park site as rare newt found

Habitat works will be needed at the proposed site of a skate park in Lincoln after a protected species of newt has been found in the area.

The City of Lincoln Council found that Hobbler’s Hole, the site of the proposed skate park, is home to the Great Crested Newt, a protected species.

The single newt was found during a survey by the council into wildlife in the area.

In the past, newts have been found occasionally in the last 30 years, with the last official sighting being in 2001.

The council will now work with Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust to build the skate park so it improves the area for wildlife.

The Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus); male specimen in "mating dress" under water. Photo: Rainer Theuer
The Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus); male specimen in “mating dress” under water. Photo: Rainer Theuer

Project Manager Antony Angus said: “We, of course, knew of the sites environmental importance when the skate park was proposed, but rather than this project threatening the ecology, we aim for the project to improve the habitat for a number of species.”

“A recent survey found a single female. This, and the other surveys over the past few years, indicates that the population may be fragile.

“The pond at Hobblers Hole is so shallow it is seasonal and it is in a poor condition. Given this our ecologist was shocked to find the newt at the pond a couple of weeks ago. The pond has now dried up completely.

“As part of the project we aim to improve the pond and the surrounding habitat. We will then work with the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust on a management plan to ensure that all species flourish for years to come.”

In addition to wildlife, the council also plans to re-introduce Trifid Bur-Marigolds, a wild flower, when the soil is broken just before work begins.

Public consultations

Residents and local skaters still have a chance to have their say on the new skate park, which initially would have been erected near the Grandstand.

However, due to planning laws around the area, the proposal was moved to Hobbler’s Hole by Whitton’s Park, situated between Long Leys Road and Yarborough Road.

The skate park design will be on display for skaters on July 4 on the Brayford, as part of a special event organised by Lincoln BIG.

Another public consultation will be held on July 13 from 10.30am at the Grandstand Community Centre.