THE row regarding the decision to spend £400,000 protecting great crested newts during the building of the Shavington bypass will be featured on TV's Tonight With Trevor McDonald this week.
The newt row erupted in February after details released under the Freedom of Information Act revealed English Nature and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) demanded 56 Great Crested newts be protected if work on the bypass was to go ahead.
The cost of protecting the species was £414,479 - or £7,400 for each newt.
Now, after the Tonight team picked up the story from the Chronicle, the flagship news programme has decided to feature the story on its Friday show, to be aired at 8pm.
Viewers will see Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council leader Brian Silvester put forward his thoughts on what he called at the time a 'great waste of taxpayers' money'.
Cllr Silvester's forthcoming appearance on the show will form part of an investigation entitled 'Wasting Your Cash?' which looks at controversial uses of public money, from robotic falcons to ward off pigeons and 'thinking caps' for council employees.
Cllr Silvester said of the interview: 'The show is focused on wastes of public money, and I expressed the view that the £400,000 spent on the newts could have been better spent elsewhere.
'In my view it would have been better to spend a smaller sum on some of the many great crested newt colonies in the country rather than spend £400,000 on this scheme.'
But Cllr Silvester assured he had no axe to grind with the species.
'I'm not against newts and I'm not saying they should all be destroyed, but the way they're going about it is a waste of money.'
Tonight producer Bob Jefford Cllr Silvester's contribution to the programme had thrown up some interesting issues.
He said: 'The programme looks at the way taxpayers' money is spent, and it was fascinating to learn how intricate the story actually was.'