An RSPB summer reception – Minister gushes about RSPB

Yesterday afternoon I attended an RSPB summer reception in the palace of Westminster. It was a good event but a little bit light on parliamentarians.

However, there were a some big-hitters in the room and some very good words in the short speeches.

Our host was Baroness Parminter who is a considerable force for good on the Lib Dem benches in the House of Lords. Mike Clarke showed a lovely video and stressed the importance of the EU Directives in protecting nature in the UK and across the EU.  Mike will have been gladdened by the words of the Minister, Rory Stewart, who said that we all ‘should be deeply, deeply, proud of organisations like the RSPB’. That’s quite an endorsement and I hope that the Minister makes that point when he talks to organisatiosn who are less complimentary about the RSPB.  The Minister went on to say that he was impressed by the RSPB’s work on nature reserves in his own constituency – nature reserves such as Haweswater and the RSPB’s success in ‘bringing back wading birds on the Solway Mosses’.

It is Mr Stewart’s aim that the UK should be the best in the world in nature conservation – let’s hope that the Minister’s aim is true, then.

Fiona Wheatley from M&S spoke well, and briefly, and said ‘No business sets out to damage nature’ which I’m sure is true, and then said that sometimes saving nature seemed an overwhelmingly big task and that what we need is a plan and a framework.  That’s fair enough – but here is a small action that M&S could take right now that would make a difference, wouldn’t cost them anything and would gain them thanks and recognition.

These speakers were all good, all very good in fact (brief, clear, interesting and making good points) but the best was kept to the end when experienced campaigner and public speaker (13 year old) Findlay Wilde told the room, and you could have heard a pin drop, that they should not let nature be at the back of the queue – they, we, all needed to give it a hand now, not after we’ve done everything else.

It’s impossible not to be moved when a relative youngster says it as it is, with passion and clarity.  I was moved. Were others in the room moved? Were they moved to act? We shall see.

Lots of people wished me, us, well with the e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting. Lots of people told me they had read Inglorious.



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5 Replies to “An RSPB summer reception – Minister gushes about RSPB”

  1. Fab report. Like you I will look to the future to see if words are transformed into actions.

  2. Rory is our MP and we are working on making all new buildings in the UK have Swift Bricks in place. This is so simple it should have been done years ago. When Screamer the Swift came out I was working with a Lib dem Minister for Bath where the book is based but sadly he was moved from his role in housing and the new Conservative minister did nothing. Rory is also trying to find a sponsor for the new Screamer translated into French which will be used in Schools in this country and many of the African countries not forgetting France and Belgium.

  3. "No business sets out to damage nature.."...really?..What about driven grouse shooting...whose proponents openly state they can only run by killing natural predators...?


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