Urban developments with access to wildlife | Property | Life & Style

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Iverna Quay apartments are behind Greenwich Yacht Club

But if the animal-mad novelist Gerald Durrell had lived in modern Britain he would have been delighted to discover an increased interest in wildlife among all ages.

And, unlikely though it may seem, property developers are often to thank for improved accessibility to wildlife in urban settings.

In Cambridge, for example, otters have been discovered living in Hobson’s Brook in the heart of Great Kneighton Country Park, which is the focus of Countryside Properties’ Great Kneighton development in Trumpington. The 120-acre country park has woodlands and a 50,000 square-metre bird reserve among its four ponds.


We have employed experts to oversee the ecology of the country park

Andrew Carrington


“Providing natural green spaces, both for residents and wildlife, is very much our ethos at Countryside,” says Andrew Carrington, managing director of the company’s Strategic Land team.

“We have a number of ecological projects on all of our sites to attract and enhance wildlife and make sure they thrive for many years to come. The discovery of otters is such exciting news for us and our residents at Great Kneighton.

“We have employed experts to oversee the ecology of the country park.

“They have been on-site long before any construction started and will be keeping an eye on our wildlife for as long as 10 years after construction finishes.”

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Wildlife levels at Kingsmere in Bicester have increased significantly since construction began

Countryside has recently launched new apartments at its Aura development at Great Kneighton.

The two-bedroom Mendini Apartments have decked terraces, large open-plan living spaces with contemporary fitted kitchens and double bedrooms. Prices start from £440,000 (01223 656167; auracambridge.co.uk).

Wildlife levels at Kingsmere in Bicester have increased significantly since construction there began, according to the latest annual ecology survey of the site.

New wildlife habitats including ponds have been created as part of the development on the outskirts of Bicester, where Countryside Properties is responsible for overall strategic development of the site. Wading birds are thriving particularly well, including sandpipers and little ringed plover.

Neither had been recorded on the site prior to the ponds being created. Little egrets and gadwalls, a less common relative of mallard ducks, have…

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