Sweeping the marshes with his binoculars, RSPB warden Tim Strudwick is keen to highlight how the broad open landscape enhances Strumpshaw Fen’s magical attraction.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

What draws visitors to the pristine reserve near Norwich is not just the birds, the playful otters and its other abundant wildlife, but the timeless setting “without too many artificial structures”.

Mr Strudwick, 49, who has worked for the RSPB for 21 years, 15 as the warden at Strumpshaw Fen, has joined the growing list of wildlife champions supporting the EDP’s Say No to Pylons campaign.

The immediate response to our campaign, launched in the EDP yesterday, has shown people’s visceral opposition to the idea of giant pylons marching across the Broads.

National Grid has confirmed it is looking at ways of bringing power ashore when the massive East Anglia One windfarm is built off the Suffolk coast, and one possible plan would involve a 25-mile power line from Lowestoft to Norwich, potentially peppering the Waveney or Yare valleys with pylons.

A spokesman said detailed route plans would be published next summer; in the meantime South Norfolk District Council has pledged to lead the way in organising public meetings and ensuring adequate consultation.

Mr Strudwick said: “The landscape at Strumpshaw Fen is a very important part of the visitors’ experience and pylons would not be something I would like to see.

“From the RSPB’s perspective, we would be concerned about the impact on birds.

“There are a large number of wintering birds across the Yare Valley reserves, not just Strumpshaw Fen, and big heavy birds like swans and geese can’t change course very quickly and are very prone to collisions with power lines.

“Going back 20 years in the Yare Valley Reserves we felt we were losing more swans from pylon collisions than we were hatching.

“Since then we have been working hard to get pylons removed with some success. In the past five years or so that has happened at Strumpshaw Fen and on Buckenham Marshes.”

Mr Strudwick said fortunately the precious marsh habitats were protected by a range of conservation designations and he hoped due heed would be paid to the environment.

While recognising that power lines could not always go underground he said planners should strive to find a route that caused the least harm to the landscape - and not look for the cheapest, straight-line solution.

1 comment

  • As electricity can enter the National Grid at any pylon in the same way as it leaves I am totally confused by all this arm flinging and rending of garments. Why do there have to be any extra pylons? I know it gives people a warm cuddly feeling to get aerated about something like this and the politicans have an election to fight next May hence the appearance of John Fuller and his equivalent from South of the Border down Suffolk way, but please would the EDP do the responsible thing and explain the scientific facts about electricity to people before they all look daft. If for some reason there has to be new cabling then bury it. End of. All go home and make a nice cup of tea.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Friday, November 23, 2012

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Norfolk Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 14°C

Five-day forecast

loading...

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT