To support the Habitat Regulations Assessment of the Plymouth Sound and Estuaries European Marine Site, Plymouth City Council on behalf of the Tamar Estuaries Consultative Forum (TECF) has commissioned the MBA to collect and analyse evidence of recreational activities to assess the likely exposure of designated features. The project is steered by the Plymouth Sound and Tamar Estuaries Recreation Mitigation Task Group which consists of Plymouth City Council, Cornwall Council, South Hams District Council, West Devon Borough Council and is advised by Natural England.
The purpose of the work is to inform the Habitats Regulations Assessment of the local plans for all four local planning authorities in relation to potential impacts on the Plymouth Sound and Tamar Estuaries European Marine Site. Preliminary work undertaken by the MBA investigated the possible interaction and sensitivity of priority species to recreational activity. These findings were used to inform the design of a survey into recreational activities across the marine site.
The recreational work has comprised the development of on-line surveys, face to face interviews with over 400 people engaged in land and water based recreational activities and engagement with key stakeholders via three workshops and other seminars and meetings. Two members of the proposed project team, Dr Olivia Langmead and Dr Heidi Tillin, are involved with the HRA project as project managers and have both led workshops and interviewed stakeholders. They are both involved in the final analysis and reporting stages. Heidi and Olivia take part in diving, sailing, kayaking and other activities locally. Their recreational experience and experience gained through the HRA project has provided them with an in-depth understanding of recreational activities and the pressures associated with these, especially in the Plymouth Sound and Estuaries (proposed as a project case study) as well as key contacts amongst recreational and management stakeholders.
Project outputs include detailed maps of recreational activity intensity and analysis of visitor use.
Griffiths, Bastos & Langmead (2016) Initial results from the spring season recreational visitor surveys across the Plymouth Sound and Estuaries EMS.
Langmead, Griffiths, Bastos & Tillin (2016). Recreational visitor survey across the Plymouth Sound and Estuaries EMS.