Open Access – open and transparent?

We just added a new page to the blog see Battle for the Bogs: Campaign Chronology.  Hopefully it will provide a bit of background to the seemingly never ending struggle to conserve the unique and special places which are Thorne and Hatfield Moors SSSI.  They have been variously described as ‘wastes’ and it has been suggested that they are in fact ‘bogs in the wrong places’ because of the level of precipitation hereabouts.

The fact remains that they are here, they are special places and they are valued by local people as well as being recognised at an international level for the habitat type and species interests.  They have in recent years been recognised as being capable of making a significant contribution to regulating climate change because of their carbon sequestration capabilities.

None of the above is rocket science, locally we’ve known just how special these places are.  The problem seems to be getting those whose statutory duty it is to safeguard and protect them to listen.  As Iolo Williams said in his State of Nature address, they seemed to be categorised as ‘resources’ and as such are to be used and abused.  Where else in the UK would a Neolithic Trackway, discovered in 2004 be left preserved ‘in situ’, later to be abandoned to deteriorate because the agency charged with its care appears to have neglected their duty of care?

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The image above was taken in 2005 when lots of people took and interest in the amazing discovery which astonishly had not ended up in bags of ‘organic multi-purpose composts’ destined for the garden centres.  Many of us who had witnessed decades of plunder had wondered what else had been bagged before discovery.  The image below is just two years later, when interest had drifted, got distracted and left it to the care of the statutory agency ….

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There are other images which show the ongoing deterioration of the site, but they are depressing – do we need reminders of ‘moor’ failure?

Watch this  space for ‘moor’ revelations, coming shortly ….

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