Thursday, 5 January 2017




AMONG the many birders concerned about the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust's visitor centre proposal for Spurn is Brian Egan who manages Norwich-based Rare Bird Alert.

He has expressed his misgivings in an email to the planning department at East Riding Council which will be making a decision later this month.

He writes: "I am writing on behalf of Rare Bird Alert to object to the proposed development.

"As our name suggests, we provide birdwatchers with information on when and where rare and
unusual birds turn up.

"The Spurn peninsula is famous among birders across Britain and around the world as one of the most important sites for bird migration in the UK.

"Every year, thousands our subscribers travel to Spurn to see the amazing birds that turn up there.

"Seeing these birds gives people tremendous pleasure and connects them with the natural world. It inspires people to seek to protect migratory birds and to educate and enthuse the next generation of naturalists.

"Without question, one of the main attractions to birds (as well as to birders) of Spurn is the habitat and atmosphere of the area, it has a frontier feeling to it.

"The proposal visitor centre is, in our view, a wholly inappropriate development for the area. Important scrub habitat that migrant birds depend on will be lost.

"The proposed site for the new centre  is famous for attracting rare and unusual birds and even if scrub is replanted elsewhere birds are less likely to find it and be able to feed.

"Furthermore the new centre would, without question, change irrevocably the atmosphere of Spurn.

"This proposal is not in keeping with the spirit of the area. In recent years organisations such as the National Trust have been making development decisions and a key factor they consider is about sense of place.

"You have a responsibility to protect places that mean a lot to people and that they feel they have some ownership of and responsibility for.

"Failure on your part to do this will be to the severe determent not only to the wildlife of Spurn and the people who live there but to the whole of the community of East Yorkshire.

"On behalf of many hundreds of our subscribers and thousands of followers on social media, who have expressed dismay about this new proposal, we strongly urge you to reject this planning application."

Picture: Salt Architects, Beverley

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