Iolo Inspires in the Idle Valley?

State of Nature 2013 delivered a very strong message, Iolo Williams was passionate and erudite and it seemed as if he was calling conservationists to arms?  A variation on theme was delivered at the 2015 Bird Fair, it went down a treat with a packed audience. It’s worth listening to the animated champion for Wales and its wonderful wildlife, entertaining definitely and some might say disrespectful in parts?  Much of the Bird Fair version was also used in Friday nights offering, but extended and a entertaining Q&A session.

Friday night he was the Nottinghamshire Wildlife’s Trust guest speaker at the Idle Valley Rural Learning Centre. He treated a packed audience to a whistle stop tour of Wales and it’s amazing biodiversity and stunning landscapes.

Iolo’s wonderful mellifluous Welsh lilt entertained and informed in equal measures.  At times quite critical of the state of nature and the agenda which had caused it. When asked how he saw the future it was through education, holding the view that if youngsters were introduced to nature at an early age then a love of it would stay with them.  Whilst we can I’m sure subscribe to that view, why does it seem that there are missing conservation champions from one if not two generations?

Pride in his Welsh roots added to the presentation particularly the descriptive local names of birds like the boda tinwyn or Hen Harrier which when translated becomes the apt ‘white bummed buzzard’? Tinwen y garn or Wheatear ‘white ar**d chat’ – you had to be there to appreciate the nuances!

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Iolo Williams : two of his books, then & now

Anyone planning a holiday in Wales would benefit from reading some of the detail offered in his latest book Wild Places: Wales Top 40 Nature Sites.

If I were to be honest I probably preferred his 2005 offering Wild about the Wild.  It takes you through a year (September 2004 – August 2005) with observational gems and a refreshing honesty.

Just one negative, that Seren Books the publisher of Wild Paces have been let down by their proof reader because Page 143 is not an iconic Red Kite the national bird of Wales!  but that should not stop anyone from enjoying the landscape images or benefiting from Iolo’s knowledge of the sites.

If readers ever get chance to hear or meet Iolo then take it up, would that there were more like him in every country and county, championing their local patch!

 

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