I am very relieved to be able to show you these lovely photos of a hazardous area near the Oblique mansion which has recently been made safe for young and old.
These areas border a historic pathway which is now a footpath.
There are still fungi, stag beetles, butterflies, owls and other wildlife in the area, but over years it has been gradually tidied and urbanised. We have protested more than once, but to little effect.
The semi-wild edging to the footpath has very recently once again been strimmed or cut right back. When I say cut right back, I mean hacked, as you can see.
I did my little bit. I wrote to the Borough Council. It appears I had no idea about the hazards involved in suburban England. The hacking was apparently done because- gasp- an elderly resident had allegedly slipped and fallen into the scrub, and parents walking their children to school had asked for it to be cut back.
As you can imagine, I was relieved that our council had dealt with this danger in the suburbs. In fact, I have decided to help them out and go out weekly with my shears to keep the dangerous shrub at bay. In fact…. no I haven’t. I’m lying. I think this explanation is hard to understand and unjustified.
I can understand why it might be sensible to trim the edges of the wild area and make sure it doesn’t cause a hazard by encroaching on the tarmac area; but the complete obliteration of it seems pointless. If the scrub along here was such a danger, why hasn’t the scrub all over the borough been cut back and all the paths completely paved? We walk in the area daily and there are very many footpaths and pavements where vegetation is far closer to the tarmac areas. Almost all gardens have growth bordering the pavement, some of it spikey. Carried to its logical conclusion, there would be no vegetation at all next to pavements and footpaths.
Surely there can be some better, more sympathetic way of managing it? We are by no means experts, but some healthy neglect (while making sure the vegetation does not handicap pedestrians) would seem suitable.
I’ve written again, making these points. I’ve written to the local wildlife trust. I’ve even written this blog. I haven’t got much optimism about it.
Am I being hopelessly idealistic? Is this relentless obliteration of wild or semi-wild areas inevitable? What else can I do?
(I have no idea why the font size suddenly changes in this post. One of life’s mysteries.)