Wednesday, 7 March 2012


The irony is that you set out to go for pleasant country walks hoping to enjoy unconfined wildlife in order to escape the scheming, the machinations and the skulduggery that so often goes with aspects of human affairs; and what do you find? Deception, fraudulent claims, spin and skulduggery; and you meet the kind of people who can live with it and even promote more of it. Not difficult to understand why you don’t see them spending much time out on the land themselves apart from in the line of duty: they know you can’t come here to escape the kind of racket they go in for themselves.

What brings on these thoughts? Simply the accumulating evidence that the conservation industry is hell-bent on deceiving the public into thinking that they (the public) are being consulted on the future of the Sheffield Moors. In reality they’ve already decided what they intend to do and have calculated how much they will get out of it. The present series of meetings run by the Sheffield Moors Partnership is a stitch-up and nobody seriously believes otherwise including, I guess, those who are planning them (particularly them). The admission that funding provides a significant motivation was hardly avoidable. It was put in terms of scale – a larger area would be able to attract more money than several smaller sites. But we know that there is very little if any public involvement in these decisions and that the larger the unit the less say the people will get. It was always true. And for us on Blacka that will distance us once again from the important point of decision and give Sheffield Wildlife Trust an extended comfort zone to shrug off criticism and accountability.

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