What’s happening on the moors near Sheffield

A fine red grouse, feeding on heather.
A fine red grouse, feeding on heather.
Have your say

Driven grouse shooting involves draining boggy ground and cutting and burning vegetation to create an artificial habitat.

It makes vast areas more susceptible to the wildfires seen during the recent heatwave and increases the real risks of flooding in Sheffield.

There are also clear links to the illegal killing of birds of prey which are largely missing from the Peak District.

Ownership is part of the problem. Did you know that five moorland owners in the Upper Don Catchment received £3.15 million in Government grants and High Level Stewardship payments over a two-year period for moorland restoration work and environmentally beneficial management practices? And that those same owners over the same time burned large areas of these moors, damaging fragile vegetation. Farcically, Natural England says flood risk is not within its remit while The Environment Agency says land management is not within theirs.

I have written Report From the Front Line – What’s Happening on the moors near Sheffield with the support of Sheffield Green Party – visit www.sheffieldgreenparty.org.uk.

Sheffield Council must have proper support from statutory bodies to ensure natural flood management measures are put in place across all the moorland surrounding Sheffield.

And we need a complete ban on heather burning and driven grouse shooting.

Bob Berzins

Sheffield, S11

Gilding the lily

I note with interest the plans for the “neglected” Porter Brook near Sylvester Street. Three pictures in your report show the brook as it it is now, with a myriad of naturally occurring plants flanking the brook, which has irregular banks and rocks ideal for aquatic, amphibious, invertebrate and mammal life.

This is compared with the main artist’s impression which shows a perfectly straight uninteresting gully flanked by Tarmac and a wall inaccessible to wildlife on one side, and flat, featureless closely manicured grass on the other.

The developer makes passing reference to throwing a few rocks in the stream and planting some vegetation but if their own artist’s impression is anything to go by I think any self-respecting wildlife will be looking for accommodation elsewhere.

Sheffield City has a good ecology department and I hope our planners take their advice when presented with such proposals.

Sometimes “neglect” is exactly what nature needs, and by definition comes a lot cheaper than gilding the lily.

G Shepherd

Sheffield, S36

Listen and look deeper

Yet another excellent and informative post by Veronica Hardstaff, no doubt there will be the usual “opposers” writing responses.

My response is to urge people to listen to the lady, who either speaks with good “insider” knowledge of the EU, or she has bothered to familiarise herself with the facts about Europe and the European Union.

Many would do themselves good to listen to what she has to say, and even investigate for themselves, but not settle for the information given out by national press, (unlike local press), who all have agendas on the issue of Europe.

There are so many things that we all have been led to believe, done in a daily “brainwashing” manner.

The current regular comment put out is about the EU “bullying” us. They are not doing any such thing but in fact are working within the rules of an organisation which this country with its own votes in Brussels helped to build up. The only “bully” at the moment is across the “pond” in America.

We helped institute these rules and conditions and just because extreme right-wingers want to leave the country is being manipulated by them and their daily “mouthpieces”.

Listen and look deeper into things, this lady is not talking rubbish.

B Heaton

Doncaster, DN5

Strike a happy balance

In response to J Robin Hughes thought-provoking letter, “Conscientious Lord Mayor”, Star, July 27, the writer argues the case for the Lord Mayor not being “neutral” based on his personal interpretation of article 5.02(c) of the Sheffield City Council Constitution.

He then judges that Magid is not only morally right to protest against the actions of President Trump as an act of conscience, but has a legal duty to do so. I am not a “Philadelphia Lawyer” who can unravel the legal minefield of the SCC Constitution as to him “having a legal duty to do so” or not. This issue has never before been raised because of the actions of a Lord Mayor, unnelected to office by the people, contrary to Magid stating otherwise.

He has the unique dubious or praiseworthy distinction of being responsible for his actions which have caused so much controversy in the Sheffield, national and international communities in the short time that he has been in office, petitions for and against him being signed worldwide. It is an established SCC convention that the Mayor’s function as chair of the council meetings should be impartial and non-political. This has been adhered to by all previous incumbents and the need to now delve into the legalities of the Constitution has never been necessary or appropriate.

When Magid is undertaking his official public duties as Lord Mayor he does so as Sheffield’s First Citizen, and does not speak on our behalf. He has the right to express his personal views in a private conversation, if he wishes to make them public he should say that they are his alone and that he is not speaking for the people, especially when wearing his chain of office. Magid has not only protested against President Trump, he has incited the community to join him in supporting a Mexico Solidarity Day and has taken the unprecedented step of banning him from visiting Sheffield, even though he has no powers to do so. The SCC very quickly disassociated itself from his unilateral misguided action. As Sheffield’s youngest Lord Mayor his term of office should be remembered for all the right reasons and not wrong ones.

You have brought a breath of fresh air into the role Magid, you have an empathy with the community, you are a very likeable person and you are to be complimented on inviting citizens to be your consort on official visits. Please do not ditch all established Mayoral/council chair convention and tradition, strike a happy balance so you are seen as a credit to Sheffield.

Cyril Olsen

Busk Meadow, Sheffield, S5