Addington Hills is a public open space in the London Borough of Croydon. It has some heathland on the summit plateau with extensive woodland on the slopes. The plateau contains Scots Pine and Birch that encroach on the slopes with Oak becoming progressively more frequent lower down. The slopes are eroded to form a number of deep gullies where many of the bat boxes are erected.
Pete Guest, a former member of the London Bat Group and inspirational figure in the bat world, was responsible for gaining funding for 100 bat boxes as a mitigation measure for the passing of Croydon Tramlink through the western edge of the site.
They were erected in 2000, with three boxes on each tree to let the bats choose the most favourable conditions. Two types of boxes were used: wood and woodcrete (a wood and concrete mix). After they were erected, they were inspected for a few years but no bats were found. However in 2007 bats were finally found during a routine inspection by the bat group! Since then there have been regular inspections with bats seen on every visit.
When the wooden boxes were over ten years old some were showing their age. The London Bat Group was awarded funding from Viridor Credits under the Landfill Communities Fund for over £2000. With the grant, we replaced twenty rotten wooden boxes, erected six new bat boxes of different designs, cleared vegetation around the trees and lowered some woodcrete boxes that nobody liked inspecting because they were too high. We are very grateful to Viridor Credits that allowed this work and hope that the bats are just as appreciative.