A group of us volunteers attended a meeting with management today thinking we were going to consolidate some points from our last meeting with regard to our working as an autonomous group. Little did we know that instead we were to be told that it had been decided that we could not operate in future without a Ranger present, despite having in reality done so for a number of years. The upshot being that with the reduction of staff it will only be possible to run 10 conservation days a year, this being in contrast to us having been doing every Thursday and the first Sunday of every month plus some Fridays some 65+ days. This is a massive reduction and presumably the slack will have to be taken up by contractors and one can only wonder where the money is to come from when we are told that HBC has to make further cuts in spending in the coming year.
For us it will be so frustrating to see areas that we have been looking after deteriorate due lack of time if no-one else does do the work. It now remains for us to wait and see when these 10 days are going to be.