I am lucky to live near the river. So beautiful are the sky and the water appearing together in a musical harmony where Light is both the Composer and the Painter.
I have the opportunity to watch Lympstonians as well as many visitors drawn down to the river to reflect upon the beauty of the scene. Birds too gather to feed on the mudflats as the tide recedes.
One evening visitor absorbed in the wonder of the setting sun over the river, whispered to me in awe; “ This is completely all that we need.”  Why is it that our planners fail to give this need first place in all their doings?
To tell you a little story from the past week. It is about poor Jimmy and a small dog Pip who began his rescue. Jimmy is really not the sort of small creature one would expect to find very near water so that was strange enough. Moreover his prickles were firmly held captive by a small-mesh fishing net neatly stacked near the Sailing Club. Fortunately Pip, was inquisitive enough to discover Jimmy and to report his find to his mistress. She quickly called together some kind, willing hands to help extricate this tired hedgehog from his severe plight…… not an easy task but most successfully accomplished. She then sped with poor Jimmy (a name bestowed on him by a good friend) to the vet who pronounced him fit and well and, unusually, for a travelling hedgehog no fleas on his back. The vet decided Jimmy was very exhausted from his ordeal near the incoming tide but a day and night of rest should see him recovered.
Had he been a pet in someone’s garden? Who knows? Clearly he would be happier in fields or hedgerows so a kind friend volunteered to take him right away to safety in the countryside. He spent the night in his box in her Summerhouse for a peaceful night’s rest under some warm hay. Next day after a brunch and a supper of dog food Jimmy was clearly ready to be off. As a night loving animal he was gently released in the evening in the garden by fields where no badgers have lately been seen and away from cars on the lanes. (Both predators who have distressingly added to the decline in the hedgehog fraternity). He trotted off in good heart without hesitation. A happy moment too in the lives of one small dog and several kind hands in their successful rescue of this small animal. Do let us know if you ever see him.
Another remarkable success of hard work , skill and imagination is the most generous, newly planned and planted garden of Jules and Den: an adventure of positive, creation in aid of wildlife and its beauty to be enjoyed by the visitors who Jules and Den welcome to their home. What they have done in a short time is phenomenal. How speedily they have recreated what was an unproductive little field…..Well done indeed.
Their story is in the Herald for us to enjoy so I will wish you well and thank you for all that so many are doing to help restore our priceless wildlife.
By the way, have you seen the kingfisher sighted by several people in the car park? I gather he even taps on the window of one family facing right onto the brook. Strange.
Mary Truell