A local gardening group recently made a song and dance in the local papers about getting a fair amount of money from a corporate body to create a wildflower meadow at our local Railway Station. £1600 to be precise. The aim is to increase biodiversity – all very good. They have done some good stuff – planted some birch trees and, presumably, some wildflowers that will appear in the Spring – although at present it is all daffodils. There’s something that is probably a bug hotel, although it looks like a gas meter box. It’s in a good, public spot, but behind a fence so that it won’t necessarily get vandalised.
And they have put up some birdboxes – lots of them – at least 6 at the last count. And every single one of them is facing south – so that any baby birds will cook in their nests. Everyone I have spoken to involved with the scheme realises that this is a mistake. There are too many boxes, in the wrong place, and facing the wrong way. Nobody seems that bothered.
Yesterday I spoke with the organiser. He knows they are wrong. He claims they can’t face any other direction because the funders (who also own, and/or run) the station didn’t want the bird boxes facing the road, he says, in case bird droppings fell on cars parked there! He says that anyway it’s just for show, and it doesn’t matter. And to some extent he’s right – the boxes are very unlikely to be used in the place that they are in. But in a way that makes it worse. They got money for those boxes, and yes, I know it’s not a lot. But it is such a waste – and as it is in such a public space. it sets a bad example.
And they next time someone want to get some funds to do some biodiversity work, or tries to make a difference, some folk might think it’s going to be just for show, like this scheme.