Letters: RSPB Hoy Warden Cuts: ‘corporate-speak and empty words’

and envelope

Dear Orkney News,

The Orcadian’ has asked folk to stop sending them letters about the situation re. the RSPB warden on Hoy, and say to contact RSPB direct instead.

When this issue first arose I sent a piece to ‘The Orkney News’ and got a response from the Stromness office.  I also sent an email to the  RSPB Head Office – but received no reply.

Here’s my letter….

“To Membership

Thurs 23 March, Hello,

The following appeared in ‘The Orkney News’ today……

And in my blog…..


It shows something of the strength of feeling about your organization’s decision to cut the RSPB  Warden post on Hoy to part-time.

My husband and I are long-standing members of the RSPB , and have increasingly come to the conclusion that – as happens with many organizations –  you have got too big and lost sight of your initial aims.

Please re-consider.

Yours, Mrs B Bell, Orkney”

If the line of communication through ‘The Orcadian’ were still open I would have written again,  thus….

I wonder if any record is being kept of how many RSPB members have cancelled their membership because of this? And how many RSPB volunteers have decided to stop volunteering?

Mike and I considered cancelling our Membership but…we are Members primarily so that the RSPB can buy up great lumps of land to stop harmful things happening on those areas of land, and conserve and protect what is there.  And that still stands.

It looks like now, the RSPB is mainly interested in what is cost-effective. The reserves with easy public access, a gift shop etc., rather than vast areas of moorland from which they gain little financially, but which should really play a very large part in the work of the charity – and which until now have done so – Birsay Moors comes to mind.

Reading the RSPB response to Tim Dean in this week’s ‘Orcadian’ means reading a prime example of corporate-speak and empty words, the root of which is – money.

What on earth is  “a cost-neutral way to manage priority work” supposed to mean?

Cost-neutral means – neither plus nor minus financially.  How is anything cost neutral – never mind the running of a nature reserve?

Then, Mike started to read our most recent copy of the RSPB magazine, and I exploded – saying that that’s what they’re interested in – flannel, nice pictures, saying and showing how much they ‘care’.

And so I put fingers to keypad, hoping that TON would publish my views on this again.  Views which appear to be held by many in Orkney and possibly beyond by now.

This whole issue places a huge question-mark over the RSPB – what they think is their purpose now, and over whether we want to support what they are becoming?

Still thinking over whether to cancel our Membership.

Yours, Bernie Bell, Orkney

The bay of Rackwick in Hoy showing a sandy beach surrounded by cliffs
Rackwick Bay Hoy

Categories: Letters

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1 reply »

  1. Yep, Sankeys at it again.
    Huge amounts of frustration and damage caused to communities of Hoy and Sooth Ron.

    What ever happened to looking after yer neighbour, no double crossing them.

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