Here is a run-through of the roles of organisations and individuals in making Hen Harrier Day happen. Some people’s roles have been omitted at their own request, either because they are too modest to want any credit or because they don’t want their bosses to know how much they helped.
Most of this list is related to the Peak District event, because that’s where I was most closely involved, but it can’t be said enough that Birders Against Wildlife Crime (in the shape of Alan Tilmouth) organised the Northumbria event, and BAWC attempted to arrange some other events in Yorkshire and Cumbria but these weren’t in the end possible (maybe next year?), the Northwest raptor Protection Group organised the event in the Forest of Bowland and some bloke on Twitter called @ashleywatts3 (I’m guessing he’s called Ashley Watts, myself) organised the event in Dorset.
Charlie Moores of BAWC has worked tirelessly (although I think he did get a bit tired actually) producing podcasts, writing blogs and other text, tweeting and generally has been a driving force for Hen Harrier Day. And he’s been incredibly supportive to me at times when I have needed the equivalent of a ‘hug’ over the phone.
Chris Packham and his team (including Ruth, Gerry, Jez, Adam, Nick) promoted the day, designed a T-shirt, attended and filmed proceedings, arranged and did media interviews, added over 100,000 Twitter followers to the thunderclap (@chrisgpackham) and Chris made a perfect speech on the day. Also, only a few people will know, by definition, that Chris was almost the last person to leave the site – he stopped and talked to everyone who wanted a word with him, or an argument, or a photograph. Big thanks to him and his team.
Anthony Roberts of BAWC designed the exquisite logo for Hen Harrier Day (@zedanthony).
Aurellio33, also known as Chris, for writing the Hen Harrier Day song that accompanies the video of the day.
The RSPB set up the HHDay thunderclap (which reached 2.3m people), added their Twitter account to it, promoted Hen Harrier Day and sent four staff (officially) to the Peak District event.
The Wildlife Trusts also supported Hen Harrier Day, added their many individual trust Twitter accounts to the thunderclap, were noticeable on the day with many banners and placards from the Derbyshire WT and Sheffield WT but also the England Director of the Wildlife Trusts, Stephen Trotter, was there in person too.
The Hawk and Owl Trust attended the event with a banner, staff and their Chair, Philip Merricks.
The National Trust gave their moral support to the day but did not, disappointingly, add their Twitter account to the thunderclap – and that would have made a huge difference in social outreach.
The Peak District National Park were helpful in the planning of the event, and facilitated advice on choosing the best location for it. They gave moral support to the event and their rangers on the ground, on the day, were part of the event. It’s a shame that the Chief Exec of the PDNP, Jim Dixon, was seen by many to disparage the event, an event against wildlife crime in his National Park (and our National Park), in a personal capacity, in an article in The Times the day before the event.
Severn Trent, who own the site where the event took place, needed a bit of nudging before they came to terms with the fact that it was going to happen but were very jolly about it all on the day. I guess torrential rain is a good day for a water company!
The Wilde family (Harley, Findlay, Heather and Nigel) brought the 6-foot tall ‘Harry the harrier’ on the day and it became a focal part of proceedings. Harry and the Wilde family will be appearing at the Bird Fair over the weekend!
A big thank you to Barry Gardiner (and Caroline) for attending the event as the only MP to come to a Hen Harrier Day event – as far as I know. Please take the message back to Labour that tackling wildlife crime should be a manifesto issue and an election issue.
The Green Party of England and Wales supported Hen Harrier Day and added their Twitter account to the thunderclap – many thanks!
Two Twitter accounts, @irinagreenvoice and @themoceanvibe, each added over 150,000 Twitter followers to the thunderclap.
The League Against Cruel Sports supported the day and added their Twitter account to the thunderclap.
Lush promoted Hen Harrier Day in their shops, and much else about Hen Harriers besides, and added their Twitter account to the thunderclap.
Birdwatch magazine promoted the day and the issues in their August issue. Dominic Mitchell has been a great support on this subject and I’m glad I write a monthly column for them.
Rare Bird Alert has also promoted the day incredibly well – thank you to them – and it was good to have a chat with Brian Egan on the day too.
Raptor Persecution Scotland attended the day and is the best, in my opinion, source of news and comment on raptor persecution issues on the internet.
I’ve sent out a lot of emails to thank people for their help and will be sending out more for days to come but in case I forget you – thank you! And there may well be people or organisations who I should be thanking here – point them out if you spot ones I’ve missed (there are bound to be some).
Pictures and videos of the day can be found here.
And lastly, I’d like to mention moorland owners, managers and gamekeepers who made it all necessary. There was at least one person convicted of a wildlife crime present at the event, and the Director of the Moorland Association seemed to be filming the whole thing too. I hope they take the message back that we are serious – and we will win!