Badgers delay opening of East Wichel play area

The opening of East Wichel’s much awaited children’s play area has been delayed yet again, this time by badgers. The badgers have been digging up grass laid on the play area. The play area will now remain closed for at least another two weeks, if not longer, whilst an attempt is made to deter the badgers for long enough for the grass to properly take root.

The environmental assessment done before the building of Wichelstowe started found numerous badger setts on the site. Because of this, measures to protect the badgers were added to the plans for East Wichel. The small tunnels under East Wichel Way at both ends of the village are such badger-friendly measures in the development.

Councillor Nadine Watts said “These further delays are very frustrating, but the problems with the badgers could not have been foreseen. Hopefully these deterrents will work and give time for the turf to knit together. It will be a fantastic play area for local children. An official opening is being planned for the half term holidays, but the play area should be open before then for all to enjoy.” Posters will be put up near the site on Wednesday explaining the ‘Nite Eyes’ deterrent being used.

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