Lade - 0800hrs - mild, sunshine and showers, e2 - Plenty of moths (32 species) in the garden trap this morning, including two cracking little Noctuids, new for the season - White Spot (Red Data Book species) and Marbled Coronet; the former is a regular down here where it is associated with Nottingham Catchfly, while the latter favours Sea Campion, both abundant plants across the Dungeness NNR.
RSPB - This afternoon around 1435hrs the first Boeing 737 to land at Lydd Airport since the expansion plans were approved cruised in over Lydd, flew around a bit, landed from the New Romney direction, picked up some passengers (presumably) and flew out at 1605hrs over Lydd. The RSPB had rallied some local foot soldiers who were dispatched to far-flung corners of the bird reserve by Field Marshal Craig to monitor noise and the effects on birds, which appeared to be minimal as far as I could make out. More of which anon, no doubt.
Whilst on the subject of Lydd Airport I feel a minor rant coming on, aimed firmly at Shepway District Council, in the first instance. They continue to back large scale civil engineering and building projects on the Romney Marsh, regardless of local opinion, or if they`re really necessary, as, after all, there ain`t that many votes to be had on the flatlands.
For example, since we pitched up here at the start of 2006 the following projects have gone ahead:
- Lydd-on-Sea to Greatstone mains sewage system - cost millions of pounds, current uptake <10% . Result - waste of money, as nothing wrong with existing septic tanks and in the process the coast road has never recovered and been properly reinstated; it remains the worst road surface on the Marsh (and believe you me there are plenty of contenders).
- Cheyne Court Wind Farm - 26 extremely costly, heavily subsidised, unreliable wind turbines. "I`ll tell you what, let`s stick `em up adjacent to the only decent bit of wetland on the Marsh where
thousands of wintering wildfowl and waders are present, sod the birds, they can go elsewhere".
- Old Romney Solar Farm - Covers several acres of prime farmland between Old Romney and Brenzett. Thin end of the wedge this one, just watch more go up in future.
- Nicholl`s Quarry, Hythe - "Let`s give approval to a huge housing project on flood-risk land, close to an Army range with limited infrastructure and no local industry". A master stroke of planning.
- Dungeness Shingle - "Let`s approve a 12 year plan to shift shingle from Dungeness to Jury`s Gap by multiple, daily lorry movements" - instead of paying a bit more and doing it by barge at sea and building a more permanent barrier to inundation from the sea.
Phew, I could go on, but I`ve run out of steam, perhaps we should set up our own unitary authority down here, put toll payments on all entry points onto the RM, tell Shepway DC to sod off and declare UDI...