After trying to explain to the London Underground surveillance team I wasn’t a security threat (badgers are subject to this sort of suspicion around the clock), me and Louise were soon blending in with other creature inspired humans from all over the U.K. (and some as far as Uganda we were told!) as we streamed into Hyde Park on a drizzly Saturday. But this was more than just a quirky showcase for wildlife enthusiasts, this had an agenda and we were excited to join like minded people to be part of an event that seemed to have significant intent.
Chris Packham made the calling for people to join him on the 22nd September, for ‘The People’s Walk for Wildlife’, to carry a pledge to parliament to ‘end the war on our wildlife’.
After many inspiring talks and performances from other ambassadors of conservation, and a march which lead us to the key bearers of change in the U.K’s legislation, the manifesto was hand delivered to number 10 Downing Street, with a crowd of soggy supporters and giant plush bat as an audience.
Whether anything will materialise from the pledges or not is uncertain, but the vision of a wilder Britain and an end to the persecution of wild animals was one that was inspiring and one that was made to feel within reach, as long as our efforts are continued.
Let’s all do something to show we care so our voices can continue to be heard!
We’ve joined twitter with the intention of tweeting corporations and politicians over environmental issues and have stopped buying fruit and veg from the supermarkets that are packaged in plastic. We’ve both begun to accept that convenience for us normally means inconvenience (to say the least) for our environment, and are therefore more than willing to work a little harder to reduce the amount of plastic we consume. A welcome byproduct of this is that it’s actually been money saving to shop around rather than claw everything up in one supermarket sweep.
After being particularly inspired by young speakers at the event (some as young as 11), I’ll be turning my efforts to ways of opening up other teenagers’ eyes to the wonders of wildlife, especially after one 15 year old’s message was centered around her generation’s fading interest in a digital age . One of the manifesto’s pledges was to put wildlife back on the curriculum, with Green Party leader Caroline Lucas calling for ‘Natural History’ to become a national GCSE. While this isn’t an option for younger generations (and I rest hope on the prospect that it will be), I intend to use my role as a secondary school teacher to provide a club that will promote a love of and responsibility for wildlife and the environment.
If anyone has any thoughts or suggestions about the form this could take, then I’d be very glad to hear from you. What do you think? Throw it out to the kids or lay out a specific agenda? More importantly, should I wear the mask on the first day or opt not to terrify youngsters like I accidentally terrified London’s security. Oops (all for the love of wildlife!)