Archive for the Family life Category

Government response to Make ‘netting’ hedgerows to prevent birds from nesting a criminal offence

Posted in countryside, Family life, News with tags , , , , on April 11, 2019 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

We can only hope the Government holds developers to task over this. In the meantime good to see community action against developers using netting in this piece. A sobering statistic on hedgerows –
“Since the 1950s the UK has lost an estimated 120,000 miles of hedgerow – amounting to four times the earth’s circumference – and, with it, prime habitat for birds and wildlife.”

The Government has responded to the petition you signed – “Make ‘netting’ hedgerows to prevent birds from nesting a criminal offence.”.

Government responded:

Developers must fulfil their obligation to safeguard local wildlife and habitats. Netting trees and hedgerows is only appropriate where genuinely needed to protect birds from harm during development.

On 8 April, we wrote to developers to remind them of their legal obligation to consider the impact of any project on local wildlife and, where necessary, to take precautionary action to protect their habitats. Developments should enhance natural environments, not destroy them. It is vital that developers take these words on board and play their full role to make sure we can deliver new communities in an environmentally sustainable way.

Wild birds are protected by provisions in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. It is an offence under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 to cause unnecessary suffering to a bird by an act, or a failure to act, where the person concerned knew, or ought reasonably to have known, that the act, or failure to act, would or be likely to cause unnecessary suffering.

Any development project must consider the impact on local wildlife and take precautionary action to protect habitat. Bird netting should be kept to a minimum, and used only to help protect birds during development.

In accordance with Natural England’s standing advice for local authorities needing to assess planning applications that affect wild birds, survey reports and mitigation plans are required for projects that could affect protected species. Our revised National Planning Policy Framework also makes clear that planning policies and decisions should contribute to and enhance the natural environment by minimising the impacts on, and providing net gains for, biodiversity. However, we plan to require developers to deliver biodiversity net gain, under new arrangements in the forthcoming Environment Bill. This will mean wildlife habitat must be left in a measurably better state than it was before any development.

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

Big Garden Birdwatch Results 2019 – The RSPB

Posted in birdlife, Family life, News, wildlife with tags , , , , , , on April 5, 2019 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

In my own Big Garden Birdwatch the house sparrow dropped from top spot, mainly down to the hedgerow being removed at the end of last year by Taylor Wimpey. Instead it was the starling at the top, followed by the sparrow, blue tit, long tailed tit and wood pigeons.

Since we have planted three new trees at the rear of the garden to go some way to replacing the lost hedgerow habitat, we have seen a few more sparrows plus a regular pair of blackbirds, a wagtail and even Jenny wren has been back to sample the delights of the bug hotel I made with my son last autumn.

Top spots

We can now reveal 2019’s results. Once again, the house sparrow has hit the top spot. At number two is the starling, closely followed by the blue tit and the blackbird.

The woodpigeon flies in at number five, followed by the goldfinch, great tit, and robin at number 8. The top eight remain the same as last year, so it’s a battle for numbers nine and 10. The chaffinch has seen off the long-tailed tit to be at number 9, and the magpie has crept in at number 10.
Read more here

The Big Garden Birdwatch is almost here

Posted in Family life, News, wildlife with tags , , , , , on January 18, 2019 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake
Share what you do with #BigGardenBirdWatch
From bird-box makers to bird-cake bakers, the Birdwatch is a chance to get crafty and creative. Will you be inspired by what our stars have been up to?  We’d love you to tell us what you do!

How will you #BigGardenBirdWatch? 

Nicky is a keen knitter and likes to knit the birds she sees: “The Big Garden Birdwatch gives me a chance to enjoy the birds in my garden. I can watch them and turn them into knitted versions.”   Get pattern
What was top in 2018? Last year’s most sighted
Find out which birds made the top ten in last year’s Big Garden Birdwatch. Will it be the same in 2019?   See results

Taylor Wimpey withdraw plans for 903 dwellings south of Didcot

Posted in Didcot, Family life, News, wildlife with tags , , , on January 3, 2019 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

Great news in that Taylor Wimpey’s proposed development of 903 dwellings south of Didcot has been withdrawn by the developer ahead of any planning decision.

You can read more on it here 


Bug hotel open for business :)

Posted in birdlife, Family life, News with tags , , , , , , on November 11, 2018 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

You can find more on how to make your won bug hotel on the RSPB website

It is not to hard to make (even for a DIY challenged dad like me!), I simply sawed up an old pallet we had taking up space and then my son designed & filled the hotel. It includes leaves, conifer, cardboard & an egg box with straw and sand on the ground floor and a felt roof, covered in soil. Aiming to spread a few wildflower seeds on top next year. Hopefully it will welcome its first guests soon!

More hedgerow disappears in Didcot…

Posted in Didcot, Family life, News with tags , , , , , , on November 7, 2018 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

Taylor Wimpey destroying more hedgerow. During the past couple of years since moving here it has been host to lots of birdlife including sparrows, starlings, wood pigeons, robin, dunnock, wren, blue & coal tits and magpies. The wood pigeons and magpies did nest here and in a nearby tree, also removed by the developers.

d1

There is still a little bit of hedgerow left, although not much cover left for the smaller birds and nesting sites hasve gone. Having a bit of hedgerow at the bottom of a new home should be a good selling point? I guess it doesn’t fit the neat new home plots they wish to create, which makes a mockery of their supposed environmentally focussed development plans.

d2

Only a small piece of hedgerow granted, however it won’t be replaced and it has dispersed local birdlife and wildlife, which is being replicated daily throughout the GWP development. I don’t disagree new homes are needed, however brownfield sites such as the power station and an overall plan as part of the Didcot Garden Town plan should be adhered to, not just greedy developers building and be damned to the consequences on local wildlife and infrastructure.

The current allotment plan you can comment on until this Friday 9th November 2018 by visiting here

It sounds good, new allotments with parking, however as always the devil is in the detail and if approved it will see spoil from elsewhere on GWP used to raise the level of allotments; a busy footpath to West Hagbourne closed (one nearby has been closed since December 2017 until 2020!); high trees planted blocking views of the nearby countryside and increase in flooding risk.

#birdlife #savethecountryside #didcot #taylorwimpey

Save Hagbourne Fields

Posted in Didcot, Family life, News with tags , , , , , on June 11, 2018 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

hf
Taylor Wimpy has submitted revised matters for Hagbourne fields north of the 900+ homes application. Creating allotments, with 30 car parking spaces, opens space and forest area. This also sounds good until you look at the details. Please read the information and application links below.

Main concerns are.
1. Unnecessary major re-landscaping with unwanted spoil.
2. Loss of views of the North Wessex Downs
3. Excessive car park
4. Increase risk of flooding due to proposed landscaping.

Please help us stop Taylor Wimpey’s continued onslaught of plans to rob us of our amazing country side.

Comments close 14th June – you can comment here