Bridgetown’s at risk hedgehog population has received a welcome boost thanks to a group of local volunteers.

Hedgehogs have been placed on the Red List for British Mammals as they are vulnerable to extinction.

Totnes has a significant hedgehog population and South Devon Hedgehog Hospital based in Newton Abbot says it regularly receives hedgehogs that have been injured by motorists in the town.

In a bid to help protect the endangered species and boost their numbers, Bridgetown residents joined forces with LiveWest housing association, Bridgetown Alive! and local councillors to map the streets in their neighbourhood where there have been regular hedgehog sightings.

Thanks to a £136 donation from LiveWest, 12 road signs have been installed around the estate, encouraging drivers to be alert for hedgehogs and to slow down.

Totnes district councillor, John Birch, said: “Bridgetown is home for many hedgehogs, and they travel throughout the area looking for food and this involves crossing roads which places them in danger.

“Hopefully the signs that have been erected will remind drivers of the need to look out for these ‘residents’ of Bridgetown.”

Town and district councillor, Jacqi Hodgson added: “I’ve been delighted to help out with installing these new hedgehog signs in Bridgetown. 

“LiveWest have certainly supported the residents and Bridgetown Alive! who have responded to the many residents who have become increasingly concerned about the fate of declining wildlife and in particular our dear little hedgehogs. 

“I hope these new signs will also help reduce traffic speeds, as that will make our streets safer as well as much more pleasant to walk, cycle and live in for humans too. 

“I hope that more local parishes will follow suit.”

Charlotte Holdsworth, LiveWest’s community connector said: “The people of Bridgetown are passionate about wildlife and their environment.

“This species is on the red list for British mammals and is now classed as vulnerable to extinction so needs our help.

“Hedgehog road signs help to remind drivers to be conscious of the presence of hedgehogs and all small mammals, with a view to reducing both the number of small mammal road deaths and injuries.

“It’s another exciting move for this community who strongly support our work towards protecting these beautiful creatures.

“Our customers can be very proud about the steps they are taking to protect the environment.”

The hedgehog signs have been erected on the A385 near the Berry Pomeroy junction, Dukes Road, Pathfields, Furze Road, Higher Westonfields, Westonfields, Weston Lane and Meadow Brook.