As I may have mentioned in an earlier post I am trying to convince my local authority of the value of conserving a four acre unimproved wildflower meadow instead of keeping it mown with the future intention of building tennis courts or a bowls club. Such development would of course destroy the rich flora and fauna presently on the field. An extract out of my recent letter to the council follows.
"As I think you know I am not very happy with the way the Council is handling the future of the Field.
As a volunteer member of the Field Sub Committee I would like to clarify and confirm my views which appear to be somewhat different to the majority of Council Members.
Since 2004 I have written a number of times to the Parish Council on the subject of creating a nature reserve using the field.
This concept has had support from Somerset Wildlife Trust and many others including local members of the Wildlife Trust.
Recently the result of the Councils questionnaire once again clearly shows a high level of local support for conserving what is a rare example of a natural unimproved wild flower meadow.
It is pleasing to see that Council accepts several aspects of the written proposal submitted last December for the first public consultation meeting. However the main feature of the proposal has been so emasculated as to be hardly recognisable.
The plan attached to the Design Brief handed to me yesterday relegates the meadow to a size of about one acre at the eastern end of the four acre field. Even some of this will be taken up by the 6 foot wide walking and fitness trail. The remaining three quarters of the field is to be marked out and may be kept mown as a general recreational area set aside for possible future development as a bowls or tennis club or other use. The Parish already has a recreational area close by which is not greatly used so adding further space is unnecessary and especially at the cost of environmental damage in terms of biodiversity loss.
If this is the outcome it may be difficult to encourage local residents to visit. If for example a bench was installed the view would be less than inspiring!
Such action would destroy the meadow and all it contains and be yet another example of destruction of a special site with rich biodiversity. It is ironic that whilst other parts of Government are passing Acts of Parliament requiring Parish Councils to protect, conserve and even improve biodiversity, Our Parish Council is taking such negative and damaging actions.
I hope I have explained why I am recording my strong disagreement with the present intentions of the Field Sub Committee.
I would therefore request a re appraisal of the area to be designated a nature reserve before your design brief is taken any further.