Badgers at threat due to new housing development in Epsom
A new housing development could collapse several badger setts and force them into a much smaller area, according to campaigners.
An application to build 10 detached and semi-detached houses on former railway land in Mill Lane, Epsom, has been submitted to Epsom and Ewell Council, following sale of the land in 2009.
Animal lovers fear the badgers could be forced into an area that cannot sustain them, when work on building the development begins.
But developers Loganberry Ltd have donated part of the site to be left as a wildlife area, with a £100,000 endorsement to be administered by a wildlife trust.
Councillor Julie Morris, who lives opposite the site, said: "Any kind of construction near to the active setts is going to collapse the tunnels used by badgers and force them into a much smaller area.
"The offer by the developer to bequeath the freehold of the remaining land and endow the Trust is generous and hopefully something can be negotiated."
Angry campaigners of the Millbridge Wildlife Trust joined forces to protect the wildlife and attempted to buy the land from Network Rail when it went for sale in 2009, but were outbid.
Since launching the group has sent out 400 newsletters to local residents, written to councillors and Surrey Wildlife Trust in the hope of keeping the plot of land from disappearing under concrete.