Anti-sports dome campaigners say they have been barred from looking for bats in a derelict school pavilion due to be demolished this week.

Nonsuch High School for Girls in Ewell Road, Cheam, wants to replace the dilapidated pavilion as part of its plans for new sports facilities including a controversial air-supported dome.

Resident Neill Denny, who belongs to the group, said: "The school are planning to demolish a derelict pavilion on the site to make way for the development but have refused permission from local residents to conduct a bat survey to assess if the pavilion is a bat roost."

An ecological consultancy's initial bat assessment, on September 5, did not find any evidence of bats inside the building but said bats could be living in external gaps.

Its report said: "Although the building is probably very cold in winter due to the missing roof half, the building could possibly be used as a summer roost for bats living under the loose and broken tiles along the northern elevation in particular."

Sutton Guardian:

The dilapidated pavilion at Nonsuch High School for Girls

As a result of its findings, a more detailed survey was carried out on September 23. At dusk that day common pipistrelle bats were seen flying along the tree lines.

But the report said the suspected roost was "unconfirmed" and recommended the continuation of work without interruption. It said: "If any bats are discovered during the renovation, work needs to halt and a licensed ecologist notified."

The optimum time for the second survey is between May and August, but it can also be carried out in September.

Headteacher Peter Gale said they had paid for several bat, newt and tree surveys as requested by Epsom and Ewell Borough Council (EEBC).

Mr Gale said: "We have met all the statutory requirements placed upon us by EEBC."

A council spokesman confirmed that the demolition of the pavilion building does not need planning permission.

Sutton Guardian:

Plans for the new pavilion at Nonsuch High School for Girls