INNOVATIVE bat-friendly street lighting has been installed.

The LED lights, which emit a red glow, provide a bat crossing on the A4440, near to Warndon Wood nature reserve.

The lights are being introduced because of a new controlled crossing being installed.

Councillor Ken Pollock, Worcestershire County Council’s cabinet member with responsibility for economy and infrastructure said: “These ground-breaking lights are a great example where we have been able to adapt the usual standards to better suit the local environment.

‘The crossing itself will very much benefit those travelling between the city centre and the business park.

“The adapted lighting being used may look a little different at first, but we’d like to assure those using the area at night that the colour of the lights has been through stringent testing and adheres to all safety checks."

The project, which is a collaboration between Worcestershire County Council and Jacobs, is an innovative approach with a greatly reduced impact on local wildlife.

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Some species of bat are light shy and will not cross roads lit by white lights, which can stop them accessing food supplies and water.

With the red lights, the bats behave normally, feeding and moving through their habitats, just as they would in the dark.

Similar lighting schemes in the Netherlands have proved successful, helping to preserve bat species and other nocturnal wildlife.

The lighting scheme is being installed in two phases of work, to ensure the safety of road users. Phase one is now live at the exit from Plantation Drive Roundabout. Phase two will see the full switch on of the controlled crossing and the new, extended carriageway lighting, in late September.

The new crossing is suitable for pedestrians, cyclists and those using mobility scooters and has put in place to improve connectivity between the Worcester Six Business Park, Warndon Villages and the city centre. Visibility for drivers is not affected.