Table of Contents
1.0 Introduction – P3
1.1 Introductory summary/abstract – P3
1.2 Legislation and site attributes – P3
1.3 Our proposals I – P3
1.4 Local Nature Reserve status significance – P3
1.5 Our proposals II – P3
1.6 Impact significance guide – P3
2.0 Description – P4
2.1 Site map – P4
2.2 Site plan – P4
2.3 What is the site and surrounding areas like? – P5
2.4 Project information – P6
2.5 Key constraints – P6
3.0 Environment Impacts – P7
3.1 Will the local community be disturbed during the construction phase? – P7
3.2 What will happen to local air quality during the construction of Phase II? – P8
3.3 Will the local environment be impacted by increased noise during construction? – P8
3.4 Will additional vibration impact on the environment during construction? – P9
3.5 Will wildlife habitats and current nature conservation strategy be affected during
construction? – P11
3.6 Will the landscape character and visual aspect of the area be affected during construction? -
3.7 How will pedestrians, cyclists and non-motorists be affected by constraints during
construction? – P12
3.8 Are any historic and archaeological features likely to be impacted during construction? – P12
4.0 Executive Summary and conclusion – P12
5.0 Methods – P12
Figure 1 – Hengistbury Head Aerial – P1
Figure 2 – Site map – P4
Figure 3 – Site plan – P4
Figure 4 – New Visitor Centre – P5
Figure 5 – Barn Field – P5
Figure 6 – Hiker Café – P5
Figure 7 – Southbourne Beach – P5
Figure 8 – Phase II Dimensions – P6
Figure 9 – Barn Field panoramic – P6
Figure 10 – Residential Area Map – P7
Figure 11 – Wick Green photo P7
Figure 12 – Vegetation type map – P9
Figure 13 – Alternative Land Train Route – P9
Figure 14 – Future Cliff line position – P10
Figure 15 – Gulley formation – P10
Figure 16 – Eroding cliff face – P10
Figure 17 – Natterjack pond photo – P11
1.1 As part of the consultation process for the proposed phase II development of the new
storage compound adjacent to the existing visitor centre, it is a requirement of
Bournemouth Borough Council (BBC) for an environmental assessment to be completed in
order to examine the potential ecological, environmental, and geographical impacts that
could arise from the construction phase of the project.
1.6 The following terms have been produced and will be used as a guide to assess the
significance of impacts where they are predicted to occur.
Very large positive or negative impact – Developments would cause a huge positive or
negative change to the environment. The impact would be of international, national
and regional importance.
Large-positive or negative impact – Developments would cause a great deal of
improvement or decline in the area.
Medium-positive or negative impact – Noticeable improvement or decline in the area.
Small-positive or negative impact – Barely noticeable improvement or decline in the
No positive or negative impact – No observable improvement or decline in the area.
1.2 It is a requirement under EU Council Directive on the conservation of natural habitats, of
wild fauna and flora and the conservation regulations 1994 (Mcleod et al 2005), as amended, to
undertake Appropriate Assessment (AA) for implications of any land use plan on a proposed
site listed from any of the following:
Special Area of Conservation (SAC)
Special Protection Area (SPA)
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)
Site of Nature Conservation Importance (SNCI)
Suitable Alternative Natural Green space (SANG)
Local Nature Reserve (LNR)
1.3 This desk based report will discuss the findings of the Applied Sciences Environmental
Services (ASES), for the proposed Hengistbury Head plan. An environmental impact
assessment (EIA) has been produced in order to assess any potential effects of the plan on
the integrity of its SSSI, SAC, SNCI, SANG, LNR and SPA statuses during construction.
1.4 The LNR declaration of 1990 is a commitment by Bournemouth Borough Council to manage
the area in a manner that will protect and enhance the natural features of the site
(Management Plan 2005). This report demonstrates BBC’s obligation to maintaining this.
1.5 This environmental Statement will include and highlight the significant environmental
effects of proposed development and key constraints as outlined during the development
stages. It includes methods to reduce or prevent significant impacts on the environment
The Hengistbury Head site is situated to the south and south-east of the Bournemouth suburbs;
Southbourne and Christchurch. The site for the proposed phase II development is positioned in
the Barn Field, which lies approximately 200m east of Hengistbury Head Car Park.
The area comprises a mix of acid grasslands, scrub and dry heath and sits between Warren Hill
and Double Dykes. Barn Field has been the subject of restricted access since 2001 having been
enclosed by fencing on three sides. As a result, grazing has become the predominant land use
where ground nesting birds such as the Skylark (Alauda arvensis) and the Meadow Pipit (Anthus
Pratensis) have begun to benefit from this enhanced natural environment (Hawes 2006). To the
south, the area is defined by a low sea cliff and beach which is exposed to the effects of strong
prevailing winds. Warren Hill lies to the east and has special prehistoric interest (Cunliffe 1987).
Hengistbury Head is a site of international importance and is registered as a Local Nature
Reserve, Site of Specific Scientific Interest, Special Protection Area and a Site of Nature
Conservation Importance. The surrounding areas contain an intrinsic mix of wetlands, grasslands,
heathland, cliffs and scrub.
The site is connected by a network of Public Rights of Way and the Land Train route which
provides access to the Hengistbury Head Car Park and adjacent Hiker Café to the Mudeford
Sandbank. There is also a road link to the centre of Southbourne known as the Broadway.
2.3 What is the site and surrounding area like?
Figure 4: New visitor centre (Brunsdon 2015) Figure 5: Barn Field (Brunsdon 2015)
Figure 6: Hiker Café and Land Train terminal
Figure 7: Southbourne Beach (Brunsdon
Subject to clearance, planning permission and funding, Phase II development is
scheduled to commence in spring 2016 and to be completed by summer 2017. The development
follows the earlier 2013 project in which a new visitor centre (Figure 4) was established when
extensions and refurbishments of Barn Cottage were made. Phase II will involve the construction
of a new storage site for the visitor centre and the relocation of the land train’s storage facility to
an area adjacent to, and South of, the Field Studies Centre (now Hengistbury Head Outdoor
2.4 Project Information
Closure to the Public of part of the eastern-end of the Hengistbury Head Car Park which
will be used by contractors for the duration of the construction stage;
Closure to the Public of the access road to the Barn/Barn Field (Monday-Friday during
normal working hours.) This access road will be available only to construction traffic
during the entire development period. However, Emergency Service access will be
maintained throughout the period should the need arise;
There will be a temporary diversion of part of the land train route due to the access road
closure (see Figure 2);
Relocation of the Land Train storage compound from the back of the Barn Cottage to an
area adjacent to, and South of, the Field Studies Centre (now Hengistbury Head Outdoor
2.5 Key Constraints
Figure 8: Phase II dimensions
(Assignment Brief 2015)
Figure 9: Panoramic view of the proposed Barn Field site for Phase II with the new visitor centre
in the foreground (Brunsdon 2015)
The Phase II development has the potential to impact the area with a number of significant
changes. It is the responsibility of ASES to identify any potential positive, negative and negligible
impacts caused by the new development. This is of particular importance in an area such as
Hengistbury Head given its international importance to nature conservation and archaeology.
3.1 Will the local community be disturbed during the construction phase?
It is anticipated that some minor, and unavoidable impacts to local resident amenity may arise
during the construction. There is the potential for noise pollution, and an increase to particulate
and dust levels from certain construction processes, including those associated with the
movement of construction vehicles (Greater London Authority 2006). However, these are
measured as having a very small negative impact on the local community and will be negligible,
temporal and contained to within the site.
The partial closure and reduced capacity of the Hengistbury Head Car Park when converted into
the construction storage compound is considered to provide possible issues of congestion on
routes accessing the site. During construction and at peak operating times, some visitors may be
forced to find alternative parking in areas away from the main car park. As many as 80% of
visitors presently arrive by private vehicle so, it is likely that this could lead to some displacement
to local residential areas. These areas could become congested by motor vehicles and there
could be some cases of illegal parking. Solent Beach car park however, does provide an
additional 581 spaces, therefore it is predicted to have only a small negative impact. (Parkopedia
The closure of the eastern end of Hengistbury Head Car Park also has the potential to negatively
impact the Hiker Café. The conversion of the car park into a storage compound and the closure
of the access road towards the visitor centre will restrict access to the café and the steady
stream of construction vehicles may make the café inaccessible to the public. A medium
negative impact is predicted, however, this may increase if the issue is not addressed.
3.0 Environmental Impacts
Figure 10: Residential areas most likely to be
impacted by increased parking congestion
following the closure of the eastern end of
Hengistbury Head Car Park as highlighted
within red box. (Ordnance Survey 2012)
Figure 11: Streets such as Wick Green offer
footpath access to Hengistbury Head and
could be at risk from alternative parking
requirements. (Brunsdon 2015)
3.2 What will happen to local air quality during the construction of Phase II?
It is highly possible that the Phase II development will produce air pollution including dust
emissions. The movement of construction vehicles is likely to cause the majority of additional
fuel and dust emissions. However, good construction practices and use of specific mitigation
methods will reduce the risk of excess emissions during development and the relocation of the
land train storage compound. Correct control measures of vehicle movements, thorough
preparation and maintenance of the site, appropriate use of equipment and suitable methods of
waste disposal are all examples of good mitigation practices (West Sussex County Council 2013).
A small negative impact is expected.
Noise pollution and increased vibration is expected during the development phase and
predominantly from construction vehicles and machinery. Noise and vibration will be highest in
the following areas during the construction period;
The Barn Field construction site adjacent to the visitor centre.
The Hengistbury Head Car Park.
The access road between Hengistbury Head Car Park and Barn Field.
The Broadway road connecting Southbourne and Hengistbury Head Car Park.
The road connecting the visitor centre and Hengistbury Head Outdoor Centre.
The re-directed land train route.
The excess noise produced during this period is unlikely to have a major human impact however
it could make the local area surrounding Barn Field and the Hiker Cafe less desirable for visitors.
There will be a small negative impact.
Increased noise pollution is more likely to impact on local wildlife and ecology however,
determining the total effect is often complicated because of the varying responses between
species. Nevertheless, there are a number of common ways in which wildlife and ecology can be
adversely affected by an increase in noise pollution;
Hearing loss resulting from noise levels exceeding 85db.
Masking of important environment clues, cues and signals.
Non-auditory effects such as increased heart rate, increased or decreased respiration
levels and stress reaction.
Behavioural effects such as territory abandonment and loss of reproduction (Cornman
The effect of increased noise has the potential to include all these listed however, the major
impact is likely to be the possible short to medium term exodus of resident reptiles and
amphibians such as the Common Lizard, and the Natterjack Toad to quieter areas, away from the
site and the relocated land train route. On a smaller scale, the presence of high levels of ambient
noise may affect long distance communication of birds such as the Blackcap and Dartford
Warbler (Underhill-Day 2005). This is known as acoustic masking (Rheindt 2003). However, birds
are often able to adapt to increased noise as evidenced by the habitation of birds in the vicinity
of commercial airports (Manci et al 1998). Noise pollution resulting from increased construction
traffic along the access roads within the site is predicted to have a medium negative impact
which in turn could be reduced by using correct mitigation measures.
3.3 Will the local environment be impacted by increased noise during construction?
Vibration caused during the construction phase can be anticipated. The movement of heavy
goods, construction vehicles and use of machinery or other equipment is likely to have a
moderate impact. The effects of vibration will be felt most where construction work and
Additional vibration from construction is predicted to have almost no impact on the human
environment however, a medium negative impact is expected to affect local wildlife, ecology
Vibration from increased vehicle movements during construction work may be enough to cause
soil break up and damage delicate habitats of both flora and fauna species along the access
roads and the Barn Field site. Phase II will be categorised by two types of vibration; Continuous
random vibration and random vibration due to single impact or low rate repeated impact.
(Amick and Gendreau 2000). Acid Grassland is predominant in Barn field (Figure 6) and local
species such as Bird’s Foot and Heath Bedstraw may be at risk (London Biodiversity Partnership
2014). Moreover, there is the possibility of damage to ant populations following increased
vibration and trampling. The presence of ant hills in Barn Field increases the diversity of flora
and fauna in the area; therefore a reduction in numbers could be viewed as a threat to the
environment (Reeve 2006).
Additionally, the channelling of visitors on the southern path adjacent to beach following the
closure of the access road to Barn Field also has the potential to increase vibration from
trampling. The temporary increase in visitor traffic along with the land train on this relatively
narrow route will have some potential implications. The route to the south of the Double Dykes,
characterised by the low lying cliffs, already suffers severe erosion from visitor pressure (West
2013.) A visitor traffic increase will further exacerbate the loss of cliff-top vegetation and
promote gulley formation leading to cliff instability, collapse and retreat as shown in Figure 8
(Budetta et al 2000).
Figure 12: Vegetation types in Barn Field and
surrounding areas (Repository-HH 2003)
Figure 13: Alternative land train route and
access road to Warren Hill (Brunsdon 2015)
3.4 Will additional vibration impact on the environment during construction?
land train route Figure 14: Theoretical cliff line position at Double Dykes under a NAI
scenario (Channel Coastal Observatory 2015)
Head Car Park
Figure 15: Gulley formations such as these are eroded further
by visitors using them for beach access (Brunsdon 2015)
Figure 16: The rapidly eroding cliff face is in close proximity to
the path feeding Warren Hill (Brunsdon 2015)
Site of Phase II
3.5 Will wildlife habitats and current nature conservation strategy be affected during
The proposed size and dimensions of phase II indicates that a portion of the northern end of
Barn Field will be taken measuring approximately 30m by 13m. The area contains a mix of acid
grassland and scrub and both provide valuable habitats. Most likely to be negatively affected
will be Bell Heather to the north and a large number of scarce non-grass species including; Birds
Foot, Suffocated Clover and Sea Mouse-Ear. Soil enrichment from increased air pollution will
favour more competitive grasses at the expense of some heathers (White et al 2008).
Furthermore a number of Natterjack Toad pond habitats would be destroyed to give way for
the storage building (Figure 17). There is likely to be a medium negative impact as a result.
Current nature conservation strategy for the Barn Field site consists of the following key
To reduce the amount of scrub cover on heathland habitats;
To continue to restrict access to most sensitive areas including the Natterjack ponds
and sand dunes;
To eradicate invasive alien plant species from the site;
Continuation of cattle grazing (Management Plan 2005).
The development stage set to occur between spring 2016 and summer 2017 will inevitably
impact on nature conservation practices. There is however the potential for both positive and
negative impact. The closure and clearance of the northern part of Barn Field will cease cattle
grazing indefinitely and is likely to affect previously restricted sensitive areas. However, positive
effects could include the eradication of some unwanted species and a reduction in scrub which
populates much of the site. Therefore the nature conservation strategy will experience both
medium positive and negative impacts.
Figure 17: Natterjack ponds in sensitive areas such as this
could be destroyed following clearance (Brunsdon 2015)
3.6 Will the landscape character and visual aspect of the area be affected during construction?
During construction it is highly likely that the landscape and visuals will be affected. The regular
stream of construction vehicles moving between Barn Field, Hengistbury Head Car Park and
Southbourne may prove unsightly for visitors. Furthermore, the conversion of the eastern end
of Hengistbury Head Car Park into the temporary construction storage compound could restrict
views of the Hiker Café and may act as a visitor deterrent. The site of construction work in Barn
Field looking towards to the visitor centre could also become unpleasant for visitors and may
take away from the natural calmness and tranquillity the area has to offer. Overall a medium
negative impact is expected from disturbed visuals during construction.
3.7 How will pedestrians, cyclists and non-motorists be affected by constraints during
There will be a restriction to one route from Hengistbury Head car park to Warren Hill and
beyond whilst the visitor centre access road is closed. Footpaths feeding the site from the north,
which bypass the Hengistbury Head Outdoor Centre will be cut off and as a result will receive far
more limited usage. Cyclists will also be affected following the road closure as cycling is not
permitted via the alternate route. At times the route may become congested and visitors may
face longer walking distances should Hengistbury Head car park fill. However, the changes are
expected to cause only minor disruption and so a small negative impact is expected.
3.8 Are any historic and archaeological features likely to be impacted during construction?
There are a number of Bronze Age and other historic features that appear around the site which
include; the Double Dykes, two round barrows and an inner defence earthwork. As a result, the
discovery of new historic features and artefacts cannot be discounted. Mitigation methods will
be applied in this case however, previously identified features are not expected to be
impacted. (Management Plan 2005).
4.0 Executive Summary and Conclusion
This environmental impact assessment has been an iterative process and one which has been
carefully constructed and developed to ensure the environmental effects arising from Phase II
are included with as much detail and clarity as possible.
There are likely to be a number of potential environmental, ecological and geographical impacts
that arise during development and from the four key constraints outlined. The impact
significance guide aims to simplify the potential problems so they are more easily assessed as
During the completion of this report a number of different source materials were used to
provide accurate information and insight into the potential implications resulting from Phase II
Development. The majority of material used consisted of previous journal reports sourced from
the Repository H-H Index however, some other journals, books and past reports on other sites
with similar developments were used. All data and information once collected was put into a
standard EIA format. Furthermore, a number of the photographs included were taken from a
site visit to Hengistbury Head. The visit facilitated a better understanding of the landscape and
ecology and the opportunity to identify additional impacts and effects which may not have
been evident prior to the site visit.
Amick, H. and Gendreau, M, 2000. Construction Vibrations and Their Impact on Vibration-Sensitive
Facilities. Construction Congress 4 (1) P758-767.
Bournemouth Borough Council, 2005. Hengistbury Head Management Plan. P15 Available from: H-H
Repository [Online] [Accessed March 29th
Bournemouth Borough Council, 2005. Hengistbury Head Management Plan. (H-H Repository
[Online]) [Accessed March 29th
Budetta, P, Galietta, G, Santo, A, 2000. Engineering Geography: A methodology for the study of the
relation between coastal cliff erosion and the mechanical strength of soils and rock masses. [Online]
Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0013795299000897 [Accessed
15th April 2015] 56 (3) P243-256.
Brunsdon, J, 2015. New Visitor centre (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015. Barn Field (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015. Southbourne Beach to the south of Barn field (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015. Panoramic view of the proposed Barn Field site for Phase II with the new visitor
centre in the foreground (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015. Streets such as Wick Green offer footpath access to Hengistbury Head and could
be at risk from alternative parking requirements. (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015. Alternative land train route and access road to Warren Hill (J. Brunsdon private
Brunsdon, J, 2015. Gulley formations such as these are eroded further by visitors using them for
beach access (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015. The rapidly eroding cliff face is in close proximity to the path feeding Warren Hill
(J. Brunsdon private collection)
Brunsdon, J, 2015 Natterjack ponds in sensitive areas such as this could be destroyed following
clearance (J. Brunsdon private collection)
Channel Coastal Observatory, 2015. Theoretical cliff line position at Double Dykes under a NAI
scenario. [Online] Available from:
Cornman, D, 2003. Effects of Noise on Wildlife [Online] Available from:
http://www.naturesounds.org/conservENW.html [Accessed 25th March 2015]
Cunliffe, B, W, 1987. Hengistbury Head: The Prehistoric & Roman Settlement 3500 Bc-Ad 500.
[Online] Oxford University School of Archaeology. [Accessed April 21st 2015]
Repository H-H, 2003. Vegetation types in Barn Field and surrounding areas: phase12003.jpg [HH
Underhill-Day, J, 2005. A literature review of urban effects on lowland heaths and their wildlife. 623
West, I, M, 2003. Geology of Hengistbury Head: Geology of the Wessex Coast of southern England.
[Online] Available from: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/~imw/Hengistbury-Head-Geology.htm
[Accessed 21st April 2014]
West Sussex County Council, 2013. Lyminster Bypass non-technical summary. [Online] Available
from: https://www.westsussex.gov.uk/media/1643/lym_bypass_non_tech_summary.pdf [Accessed
26th March 2015]
White, J, Hoskin, R, Liley, D, Sharpe, J, Underhill-Day, J and Tyldesley, D, 2008. Nature conservation
representations to the secretary of state with regard to regional special strategy proposed changes
of behalf of Purbeck District Council. Unpublished report, Footprint Ecology. [Online] Available from:
OUYItgawRuhlFtC_at6Q [Accessed 21st
April 2015] P15-19.