A CALL has been made for ‘swift bricks’ to be introduced in all new build estates to save the dwindling population of the bird.

Speaking in a Westminster Hall debate, Helen Morgan, MP for North Shropshire, warned of the birds’ concerning decline in the UK and urged the Government to adapt legislation to make it compulsory for swifts to be protected in newly-built developments.

Swifts have recently been added to the UK red list for birds after their numbers declined by almost 60 per cent since 1995.

Despite this, there are currently no planning regulations that protect swift populations in the UK.


The debate was called after an e-petition was signed by more than 100,000 people, with 305 from north Shropshire.

She said: “Swifts are beautiful birds and a huge part of our wildlife in north Shropshire.

“But while they are incredibly impressive, they are also in danger of becoming even rarer in the UK if action is not taken.

“We must provide swifts with a safe habitat by installing swift bricks in new homes, as well as working to protect precious biodiversity in the UK to ensure feeding grounds are sufficient for their survival.”

Mrs Morgan highlighted the work of north Shropshire author Sarah Gibson, described the importance of swifts to the environment in the region and outlined the benefits of mandating swift brick use in developments in the UK.

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She explained that, not only are the bricks cheap to produce, but they have also been proven to increase populations of swifts as well as other endangered bird species, such as house martins and starlings.

Mrs Morgan also warned that the decline in the numbers of swifts in the UK is also linked to the pollution of prime feeding habitats like wetlands and grasslands, causing major food insecurity for swifts.

The MP called on the Government to look at the Levelling Up Bill, the national planning policy framework, and future homes standard to take this simple step as the first move in support of such amazing birds and biodiversity the UK.