Great Crested Newt DLL

District Level Licensing (DLL) is now live across Greater Manchester. Our licensing scheme is a quicker and simpler alternative to applying for a GCN mitigation license. Greater Manchester Ecology Unit (GMEU) is the habitat delivery body for Greater Manchester.

For further information call Mandy Elford on 07971 253 185 or email You can apply to the scheme via Natural England.

What is DLL?

Great crested newts (GCN) have seen dramatic declines in their populations over the last 60 years despite being protected under UK law. It is an offence to disturb them so landowners and housing developers must apply for a licence before undertaking any building work on or around the places where they live.

DLL is a more strategic approach to licensing for this orange bellied amphibian. Developers deliver more, multiple new ponds, compared with their impact. The new ponds are created in the best places for newts to thrive. All of these ponds are monitored and maintained for 25 years. The work is all funded by developers and there is no red tape.

Strategic Opportunity Areas

Natural England have defined opportunity areas where the creation of additional ponds would benefit GCN populations. The core areas (green) contain a minimum pond density of 2 ponds within the 1km2 where GCN presence has been predicted. Fringe areas (yellow) contain a pond density of 1 within the 1km2 where GCN presence has been predicted or they are within 250m of a core area.

© Natural England, 2020 Based upon LCM2015 © NERC (CEH) 2011. Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown Copyright 2007. Contains data supplied by Natural Environment Research Council © NERC (Centre for Ecology & Hydrology) and © Natural England. Soils Data © Cranfield University (NSRI) and for the Controller of HMSO 2019. Based upon LCM2007 © NERC (CEH) 2011. Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown Copyright 2007. © third party licensors. Contains, or is derived from, information supplied by the Ordnance Survey and Rural Payments Agency. © Crown copyright and database rights 2019. © Greater Manchester Local Record Centre, hosted by Tameside MBC. Crown copyright and database rights 2020, Ordnance Survey Licence No LA100022697 © Environment Agency copyright and/or database right 2018. All rights reserved. Some features of this map are based on digital spatial data from the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, © NERC (CEH). © Crown copyright and database rights 2018 Ordnance Survey 100024198. Contains, or is derived from, information supplied by Ordnance Survey. © Crown copyright and database rights 2020 Ordnance Survey 100022021. Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right, 2020

Outcomes for GCN

  • Lots of bigger, better and more joined up pond habitat for populations of GCN to thrive
  • Bolsters existing newt populations whilst improving connectivity
  • Populations are more resilient to external pressures
  • Monitoring helps us better understand population conservation science - results open to all

Outcomes for People

  • Enables Local Authority plans for new homes to be delivered
  • More homes for newts creates more local greenspaces for communities
  • Saves time and gives certainty to developers
  • Helps the delivery of a green future (25 year plan)
  • Provides land owner opportunities to create/restore ponds
Four steps to DLL logo

How does it work?

  1. Enquire to Natural England with your red line boundary in order to obtain a quote
  2. Once outline planning permission is granted apply for a licence and pay Natural England
  3. Subject to checks, Natural England issue a licence and the works affecting GCN can legally proceed
  4. Natural England use 85% of the payment to create/restore, monitor and maintain ponds for newts for 25 years

Greater Manchester Ecology Unit,
Dukinfield Town Hall,
King Street,
SK16 4LA

0161 342 3123

An ALERC member

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