Peter Reynolds

The life and times of Peter Reynolds

Posts Tagged ‘litter

Appeal For Help – Did you attend Hyde Park 420?

with 9 comments

There was an outbreak of violence in the early evening and the police are appealing for witnesses.  We should do all that we can to help them.

DC Tony Esmond contacted me today and he is looking for witnesses to the violence to whom he can show some photographs of suspects.  He is not interested in why you were in Hyde Park or anything to with cannabis. He wants to catch the thugs who inflicted serious injury on several people. I would count it as a personal favour from anyone who is prepared to do the right thing and step forward.

Contact DC Esmond on 020 7321 9315 or 020 7321 9364. Leave a message if he’s not there.

If you did witness the trouble then you should step forward.  It is the right thing to do.  Any society needs law and order and police to enforce it. Although we may use cannabis, we are still entitled to the protection of the law and we should support the police, particularly when violence is involved.

This is also an opportunity to demonstrate that we are reasonable, responsible and respectable citizens.  Co-operating with the police over this strengthens our argument for the change in the law that we all want to see.

My understanding of what happened is that it was a perfect demonstration of why a regulated system for cannabis is a safer and more responsible approach.  It was a turf war between two groups of dealers – the inevitable result of prohibition.

What is really ironic is that CLEAR had intended to organise an event in Hyde Park tomorrow, 7th May, to coincide with the international Million Marijuana March. We invested considerable time, effort and money in applying to the Royal Parks for permission.  We agreed to pay a substantial bond, take out insurance, provide stewards at a ratio of 1:20 and undertake to clear up all litter.  They didn’t actually deny us permission but they refused to allow us to use a stage or a PA – even though we pointed out that this would enhance public safety and order.  Consequently we decided not to go ahead and instead we are running an event in Cardiff tomorrow where we have received constructive and positive co-operation from the authorities.

So the unofficial, unregulated and un-stewarded event at Hyde Park went ahead on 20th April with its own PA and look what happened. I left at around 5.30pm when the atmosphere was still peaceful but it was evident that a massive clean up operation was going to be needed.  I hope that the Royal Parks will learn a lesson from this. I shall be writing to them pointing out what a foolish mistake they made.

So I urge you to contact DC Esmond if you have any information or if you witnessed any of the trouble. Now it should be obvious but If you go to the police station to look at photographs, don’t go there stinking of weed and check your pockets to make sure you aren’t carrying anything you shouldn’t be. You don’t want to put any of the officers or yourself in a difficult position!

(Yes, I did have a little chat with DC Esmond about cannabis. I sent him a copy of the medicinal cannabis leaflet and a link to the LEAP website. Well you’ve got to try,  haven’t you!)

Walking The Dog 9

with 2 comments

High summer.  A blanket of thick grey cloud and a force four or five south-easterly blasts a fine drizzle into my face.  We’re checking out the aftermath of yesterday’s invasion and the pleasant surprise is that there’s no evidence at all of the drama that was played out near the Langstone bridge.

The world, his wife and about a thousands grockles invaded our space yesterday all in search of a dying whale.  Actually there were probably about a hundred turning the sea wall in front of Langstone millpond into a grandstand.  It’s a well known fact though that one grockle causes a disturbance in the Force equivalent to 10 locals so the initial, instictive estimate is more accurate.

Sid, the harbourmaster, came into The Bluebell at lunchtime on Thursday and relayed the news.  I took a walk up there with the dogs out of interest and the fantasy of a five figure photography fee.  To be honest, I don’t understand the fuss.  I know that Captain Kirk and Mr Spock have helped to endow whales with mystic, spiritual qualities but I see more interesting, exciting and tragic things nearly every day in Chichester harbour.  When the grockles arrived the following day I don’t think one of them turned round and noticed the 30 odd little egrets roosting in the trees just a few yards behind them.  The television crews certainly didn’t.

The entire area was in gridlock.  Glorious Goodwood and the whale turned our local paradise into an extension of the M25.  Television crews and photographers with lenses as long as my arm clogged our roads and pathways.  In the harbour itself, massive RIBs, the inshore lifeboat, helicopters and even a police boat added to the mainly manmade drama and the huge cost of it all. All credit to them though because this morning when I walked past the millpond where yesterday there was even a tent erected for the press and the multiple veterinary, wildlife and eco professionals, there wasn’t a single scrap of litter to be seen.

The same morning that the sorry whale paddled up the channel between Thorney and Hayling, Capone, Carla and I were on the other side of Thorney, in our latest favourite spot, waist deep in the saltmarsh grasses.  Our friend the heron came into sight and as we sidled up towards him I was delighted to see that his mate was there.  My longest lens is a mere few inches so, as best as one can with two dogs squabbling over a stick, I tried to get closer.

The birds took off and escaped me but as we reached the limit of that direction where a vicious barbed wire fence hinders any further progress,  I saw them both on the side of the river bank.  Then I saw double, for perhaps 60 or 70 yards in front of me were four herons casually watching the water and thinking about breakfast.

This was a truly remarkable sight.  Much more interesting to me than a enormous, sad mammal lying in the mud and I managed to record it at the limit of my zoom lens.  This was my scoop, captured in glorious Kodak colour while the grandstand roared and cheered and applauded.