Thorne & Hatfield Moors and its campaigners receive another acolade ….

There had been some wonderful autumnal sun the week before, but the day dawned sultry and yet evocative as beffiting the moors. There were a few spots of rain but the weather held, people had dressed sensibly well aware of the nature of our wonderful, wild and windswept landscape.  One commentator suggested that “The setting could not have been bettered” another that “It was an inspired idea to take us to that evocative point on the moors”.  We would certainly agree but then we need no persuasion of the unique nature and emotions they generate.

Thorne Moors has seen some action over the years, it has had amazing discoveries made on it, it has seen demonstrations to save it it and last Friday it saw a celebration when the Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire Mr David Moody (the Queen’s representative) presented a British Empire Medal at a specially convened investiture to Helen Kirk, the Forum’s Executive Secretary who was honoured in the New Year’s Honours List 2013, near Blue Bridge along the limestone road actually on Thorne Moors!

The photograph below shows people drawn from the past three decades of peat campaigns, friends and family. Thanks to Craig Bennett (Director of Campaigns at FoE) and to the Rt Hon. Caroline Flint MP for their anecdotal reminiscences of the battles to save Thorne & Hatfield Moors. To Ian Carstairs OBE, a special thank you for acting as Master of Ceremonies.

A particular thank you to the Lord Lieutenant of our beloved county of South Yorkshire, Mr David Moody for his willingness to embrace the spirit of the campaign and to agreeing to the al fresco venue, also to his staff Sharon and Mike – you can tell your grandchildren that you survived the green-eyed tabanids, the cohorts of flies known to haunt the bogs in their millions!

KW Pic 6

It has to be said that there was also the sense and a feeling that past campaigners were there with us, in spirit particularly with the last bottle of 1984 vintage “Mum’s Mild Malt” (given by the ‘infamous WB’ to the late Stephen Warburton and last aired by him at a Ministerial Conference in 2002).  The toast was to the past, to the present and ‘moor’ importantly to the future generation of conservation campaigners who will ensure that these moors, our moors are here for our grandchildren and their granchildren ad infinitum.

Thanks to Karren Wake of the newly launched Thorne Times for spending time out there with us, thanks too for allowing us to share this image marking the event.




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