This afternoon there was a consultation on the proposal, at the local council offices, to which I attended, it looked horrendous, a double storey school, playground and football pitch right on the greenbelt! I of course filled in the forms stating the reasons for my objections to the proposal, but you know whats its like, I was fighting off tanks with a dead fish!
Although planning permission has not yet been granted, a few pupils from the school I work at have already been enrolled for this Septembers intake, what does that tell you!
The 'Free School' will allow children to learn in a countryside environment, enabling them to be taken out into the surrounding countryside and explore what nature has to offer - a pity then, that very school may take away an important piece of that habitat. The field forms part of a migratory corridor, for not only the common migrant bird species, but also some rarer ones such as Whinchat, Stonechat, Grasshopper warbler, Ring Ouzel and Turtle dove. If this proposal goes through at this site, and I suspect it will, it will be another nail in the coffin for our already under pressure migratory birds, denying them a place to refuel for there long journeys ahead :-( A sad day indeed.
Just to add insult to injury, I passed the Tree Nursery on the way to the meeting, and spoke to some guys there who were preparing the site for clearance. By the weekend the field will be back to bare earth and then ploughed in. I knew this day would come, but it still very sad to know that this spring i'll not be meeting with the 19 species of butterfly that lived there, nor see the Grass snakes, and slow worms, also to lose those fantastic Bee Orchids that I found there last year, plus those jewel like Damselflies, not to mention the fantastic bird species that the habitat enticed in, Barn owl, Common Snipe, Meadow Pipit, Skylark, Jack Snipe, and Firecrest, all visited, while the Lesser and Common Whitethroats bred here last year along with many other common species, and where will the Kestrel pair hunt for small rodents now ?
A very sad day indeed for me.........some serious thinking needs to be done, with just a few days before I finish work for good, should I find pastures new ? Or carry on and record the demise of the 'Birds ( and other wildlife) of Pittswood' for future reference? After all someone will want to know where it all went, one day ?
|Bee Orchid at the Tree Nursery last year|