The issue of consents is one which owners and occupiers of land where there is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) will be familiar with.

In practice all European Protected Sites (EPS) also have national designation as well, so are also designated as SSSIs. However, the reverse is not correct i.e. not all SSSI are EPS.

Each SSSI has a specific designation, and these can require owners and occupiers to gain consent from Natural England to carry out activities which would otherwise be legal. This could include aspects such as driving a vehicle, cutting vegetation or in the case of shooting the release of gamebirds or even putting out feed.

Where necessary anyone relying upon a licence to release gamebirds on such a SSSI, must also have the necessary consent in place. These consents can vary in how they are worded but if anyone is uncertain on this aspect, they should contact Natural England or members can contact BASC for advice.

It is important to remember consent is not needed for activity in the buffer zones. And that the licensing regime applies to all European Protected Sites but not all SSSIs.

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