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Page updated - 30 August 2010


Give Nature a CHANCE

We are a group of local people concerned about the ongoing destruction of the flora and fauna with which we share this planet. We have united this summer under the banner C.H.A.N.C.E. (Concern for Habitats: Active Nature Conservation Experts). Our aim is to be actively involved in habitat creation, protection and maintenance and to educate and help others in these endeavours.


Many of you know that the activities of our species (Humans) are the major cause of declines and extinctions in most species of wildlife. These declines, and the extinction rates, are set to accelerate over the first half of this century. The desire for what we perceive as tidiness encourages people to constantly battle with nature. The harsh cutting of hedges and trees at this point in the year destroys many active bird nests. This is not only cruel, but is an offence in law for which our local police seem reluctant to act, possibly because insufficient people care or bother to make a public fuss.


Mature readers, and I hope the more sensitive and observant members of younger generations, will have noted serious declines affecting many; if not most species of flora and fauna. Who would have guessed the common House Sparrow would be a RED LISTED endangered species by the year 2000! Also, about three years ago, three species of bee were declared extinct in Britain - very serious indeed!


Due to habitat loss by constant mowing of almost all amenity grassland, our grassland butterflies are in serious decline and other invertebrates and small mammals and reptiles are absent from these mown areas. The loss of these food sources has had an impact on many species of birds including owls and kestrels. Butterflies are noticed by many people and it is sad to note the Common Blue is now anything but common, the Wall Brown was declared extinct locally a few years ago. I could ramble on and create quite a list but it is positive action on the ground and through education that will make the difference. This fact was the inspiration behind our new conservation group.


Our current projects include the establishment of a Management Plan for Shawlands Wood and roadside bank as requested by Great Cornard Parish Council. We will be actively involved with work parties to bring the plan to fruition, to preserve the existing diverse range of flora and fauna, and increase the biodiversity.


Other projects, already underway, include the creation of three butterfly meadows and reptile habitats to replace those lost to development over the last decade. We need information, especially from long-term residents, about the wildlife you have observed past and present.


CHANCE is a voluntary group with no membership fee. The membership is now over 20 and increasing each week. Whether you have a particular expertise that could benefit wildlife and the habitat, are just a casual wildlife-observer OR anything between please join us and help to stop the decline and destruction of wildlife. Getting involved WILL have an effect, will be rewarding and could be great fun.


For further information visit the CHANCE area on www.cornard.info or phone George on 07534 263629 (Mob) or landline (01787) 374874.


Michèle Frances, Sue Lees and George Millins – Founder members of CHANCE

14 August 2010



[These experts won’t ‘brag’ about their ‘credentials’, so I will. ]

Michèle, lives in Great Cornard and works locally, initially trained as a Botanist and Ecologist. She has practical experience ‘in the field’ and teaching Environmental Science, Conservation and Horticulture.

Sue, lives locally, is a Biodiversity enthusiast in developing wildlife-friendly gardens to help counteract the loss of wildlife habitats.

George, also lives locally, is a very experienced and exceptionally active conservationist.