Councillors have called for humans to also benefit from proposed landscape works on the edge of Morpeth.
The on-going inquiry being conducted in relation to the Morpeth Northern Bypass road has received submissions for the current plans to be revised so a pedestrian tunnel can be created under the road between Pegswood Park and the Bluebell Woods.
A request to review the issue of the tunnel size was made by town councillor Bob Robertson. It forms part of the recorded record of the hearing.
He said: “The currently drafted plans include a small tunnel designed to allow wildlife to travel to and from Bluebell Woods – avoiding the busy new road as part of a wider ‘wildlife corridor’ scheme. This decision was based on work done by consultants AECOM in 2009.
“As currently written, this would give a safe route to wild mammals including badgers, foxes and rabbits, however I think we have a perfect opportunity to widen this tunnel for the benefit of larger bipedal mammals, such as local residents, and in doing so massively reduce the risk to pedestrians while at the same time providing a real boost to the new park.”
Morpeth North county councillor David Bawn is in agreement.
He added: “The costs of making this change at this stage would be minuscule in the context over the overall costs of the scheme and the benefits would be enormous.”