The Daily Mail steps in for the street tree debate….

The Daily Mail steps in for the street tree debate….

Read on:

Please pass on to others…….Thanks.

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What’s in a name part 2

What’s in a name? Part 2 – article from Smallwoods Spring 2017 Issue 66

A short guide to woodland place-names:


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Congratulations to Rob McBride and the Brimmon Oak campaigners

Congratulations to the Brimmon Oak campaigners

The Brimmon Oak has been voted runner up in the European Tree of the Year contest 2017. The Welsh entry received 16,203 votes, so was not far behind the winning Polish tree which got 17,597 votes.

The Brimmon Oak, an ancient pollard, was threatened with destruction by a new bypass, but campaigners including ‘Tree Hunter’ Rob McBride managed to get the bypass re-routed.

[Extracted from the newsletter of the Ancient Tree Forum]

Well done and thanks to all those readers who voted – it was very close run!!


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More hedgehog action from Ray Sykes’ garden!

Spring is in the air!!!! More hedgehog action from Ray Sykes’ garden!


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More on the street trees debacle and an overview of some national issues and the emerging crisis:

More on the street trees debacle and an overview of some national issues and the emerging crisis:

From Dean Kirby in tomorrow’s (Saturday’s) i newspaper

Please circulate as widely as possible.



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Quiet flows the River Don……

Quiet flows the River Don……and the Sheffield & Tinsley Canal, with kingfishers and figs along the way with BBC Radio 3:

Sheffield Canal Basin with our host below…….

Our barge and the team from BBC Radio 3 ………….David Bramwell and Sara-Jane Hall: 

Quiet flows the River Don……one of the many bridges over the historic canal

A journey down the Sheffield & Tinsley Canal with David Bramwell:

And so to Sheffield’s famous fig-trees but this time on the canal not the river:


And close-up:

And in fruit:

Kingfisher photographed by Paul Biggs, and regularly seen along both the Rover Don and the Canal:

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Proposed ban on migrant birds A leaked report commissioned by UKIP has caused a stir amongst bird-watchers

Proposed ban on migrant birds

A leaked report commissioned by UKIP has caused a stir amongst bird-watchers.

The document titled ‘Euro birds steal our nuts’ was researched by the Eurosceptic Wildlife Think-Tank ‘British Ornithological Nature Knowledge European Research Servicehas identified the fact that around 50 million migrant birds are heading for British shores at this very moment. Many of these come from Eastern Europe, some from Southern Europe and worse-still, others even from North Africa. They say this information is ringing alarm bells at the vey highest levels.

The report states that ’….these migrants are arriving here with no visible passports or visa of any sort and expect to eke out a living for free in the British countryside.’ It goes on to say, that ‘…if nothing is done, then the situation will get worse…….and the English countryside in particular could soon be overrun by hordes of Euro-migrants in woods, hedgerows and farmland’. The researchers claim that the situation is at crisis point and there could soon be migrant birds even in your back-garden. They point out that the Englishman’s home is his castle, and the thought of it being overrun by migrants simply flocking in from anyway and free of charge too, is just appalling.

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has countered the report however, and says ‘Scotland is open to migrant birds from wherever they might come – we welcome warblers to an independent Scottish state’. So that is some welcome news for tired long-distance travellers from African shores. Theresa May however has said that this report ‘……raises serious issues and matters about border controls in the context of BREXIT’, and went on ‘… this suggests very clearly that our European colleagues are simply incapable of controlling migrants across their borders’. May however, ruled out the possibility of a Commons debate on the issue since democratic process was a matter for her to decide and not a bunch of elected MPs. ‘If I wish to say ‘non’ to French migrants, then that is my decision – and not for Parliament’. I will trigger Article 99 (which will begin the process of excluding all non-UK birds and migrant butterflies) whenever and however I want’.

However, despite May’s insistence on her authority independent of Parliament, there are rumblings even amongst her own back-benchers as to who will be in and who will be out

– and the migrant Ladybird issue looms large for the Tories with big-hitters like Michael Heseltine and Ken Clarke very much pro-bugs.     

Malta’s Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, whose country holds the European Union’s presidency, countered May’s comments to state that ‘… we have done our bit in the past by shooting a lot of these little blighters, but they just keep coming’.

Nigel Farage on behalf of UKIP has welcomed the report but says it doesn’t go far enough in its hard-line recommendations. ‘We want effective border controls and a system of approval for any migrants coming through. Not only this, but we need barriers and a system to trap, hold, verify and if necessary, deport those we don’t like the look of’. Paul Nuttall, the current UKIP leader noted as well, ‘….these birds come over here stealing our nuts and it is just not on. We have enough nuts here in UKIP, and by God, we want to keep hold of them’. Farage agreed, ‘….. we say ‘no’ to Europe-Nuts…..keep nuts English is what we want’.

So, the arguments rumble on and it remains to be seen what the impacts will be this summer. French Border Controls have already said that migrants arriving along the Normandy coast will be encourage to push on across the Channel – then ‘….it will be your problem and not ours’. As the French say, ‘C’est la vie’.

For the full report and more information:  %5Breport embargoed until 01.04.2017]

Wait for the full report released in a just a couple of days. Then as they say, the guano will really hit the fan………



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