Essential improvement work and management of damage caused by unauthorised mountain bikers taking place at Kenilworth Common
Essential habitat management and work to mitigate the damage caused by unauthorised mountain bikers is taking place across Kenilworth Common as part of a wider project to rejuvenate the area for the benefit of wildlife and for the enjoyment of visitors.
This work, being carried out by Warwick District Council together with Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, is part of a planned schedule of management with a long-term vision that the nature reserve will benefit from increased light to the woodland floor and a greater diversity in the age and structure of trees.
The wildlife trust has said: "This will hopefully make for a healthier common that is able to continue to provide a natural and amenity resource to the people of Kenilworth and the wider area.
"During successive Government lockdowns over the course of the Covid-19 pandemic the common has experienced a considerable increase in use by unauthorised Mountain Bikers.
"Whilst we appreciate the importance of outdoor space in the current times, unfortunately this has resulted in damage to trees through their roots being undermined, damage to the ground from the bike-runs, erosion to banks, and in creating ‘routes’ valuable wildlife habitat has been wilfully destroyed.
"As spring approaches disturbance to wildlife from bike-runs is also a concern, at a time when we typically let nature do its own thing.
"In response to this issue, Warwick District Council and Warwickshire Wildlife Trust will be putting up notices informing people where cycling is not permitted.
"Where possible the partners will make good any damage caused by unauthorised cycling, and will be selectively removing trees.
"The removal of trees in order to manage this issue will only be carried out where necessary and will, where possible, be undertaken in keeping with our aims for improvement of the site for wildlife.
"However, unfortunately there may be a need to undertake clearance and removal works that wouldn’t otherwise have taken place to ensure the safety of all visitors to the site.
"We would like to thank members of the public for their support and understanding over this difficult time, and will continue to manage this local green space whilst responding proportionately to any issues."