Tuesday, 3 August 2010


A very popular PUNCH AND JUDY SHOW is coming to Penkridge this coming Saturday.

By courtesy of Penkridge Business Association and Tedstones, the Solicitors, there will be three shows on Crown Bridge right in front of TEDSTONES.

The Shows will commence at  11.15am, 12.45pm and 2.15pm

FREE TO WATCH.   You can also enter the Balloon Race for which there will be a small charge.

Birds and Bats of Penkridge Parish - GAILEY IN THE NEWS

When I heard that a new Bird had been sited in our Penkridge Parish it made me think "I wonder how many species of birds have been recorded over the years here".    So I approached friend Richard who quickly sent me his already prepared Excel file with all his records shown on there that he had seen within the Parish.  Brilliant!   Somebody had made the first step and produced a list.  
So now, I am slowly going add to Richard's list the species that will be in my notes over the years and all the others that I know other people have made.  And of course, I will be looking through existing publications such as the West Midland Bird Club Annual Reports which will also have recorded some birds in our parish, particularly at Gailey Pools on the Watling Street. 
Yes - Gailey is in the news BIG TIME at the moment for two wholly different reasons.
First - at Rodbaston College they have applied for a planning permission to build a Windfarm comprising two very large Wind Turbines on land close to the Staffs. and Worcs. Canal and the M6.   If you are in that area, just look out for the large Anenometer Mast which is situated on the site at the moment to measure whether the wind does blow and if it does, how strong.  And please note - that anenometer mast is only half the height of what the two turbines will be if they are approved and erected - they will be a massive 126 metre (415 feet) height to tip of turbine blade when it is at its highest point.   
AND FROM WHAT I HAVE HEARD TODAY, very few people in the Gailey area even know about this proposed development.   For instance - the first application was turned down by South Staffordshire District Council but now the developers have appealed against the decision and anyone has until the end of August to submit written comments to the Inspector who is going to decide the appeal.    (I will continue and give you links to further information shortly).

The Second item of news is that a very rare bird, a FRANKLIN'S GULL, was seen at Gailey Lower Pool on Saturday last and has been seen the last couple of days and has attracted over 100 birdwatchers with binoculars and cameras.
This bird is a rare vagrant from North America and was first seen at Chasewater on the 15 July (presumably the same individual).  It is only the second record for Staffordshire and is the first record for Chasewater and Gailey - and of course CAN NOW BE ADDED TO THE BIRD LIST FOR PENKRIDGE PARISH!

Birds are one of the reasons why there are many objections to the siting of a Wind Farm at Rodbaston.  Within 1 Km of the turbines is a large HERONRY (on the island at Gailey Pool) and all those birds which breed there and their young, fly to feed in the Penk Valley on the River Penk and its streams and tributaries, as well as the ponds and marshes.   Many will inevitably fly through the area where the Turbines are proposed and are at high risk of being killed.   (Wind Turbines kill hundreds of thousands of birds throughout the world, especially when sited in areas close to breeding sites of large birds and in areas where birds of prey hunt and migrate).   For every bird that is killed, 7 (yes seven) BATS are killed by Wind Turbines.   It has been now established that bats (being mammals) are susceptible to changes in barometric pressure.  Pressure changes around Wind Turbines and this results in Barotrauma for the Bats who are unable to cope with the changes and their lungs explode.