The loss of a great activist against dewilding


Wild nature lost a good friend in mid-April when Neil Fitzmaurice died. I lost a good friend too, even though our friendship was at a distance. He first contacted me in November, 2005, about the impending wilful destruction of wild nature by his local wildlife trust. It was a breakthrough in my understanding about the dissatisfaction there was with mainstream conservation, as I was able to hear first-hand from Neil, rather than have to pick it up from local newspaper reports. Neil was an inspiration in his determination to safeguard the wild values of Blacka Moor, the moor at the eastern edge of the Peak District National Park near Sheffield that he had walked for many years, and in his superlative ability to bring that wild nature to vivid life, in both words and photographs, on his blog that he started in 2007. His philosophy on nature articulated there, and to me in personal correspondence, was a touchstone - I looked at his blog every day, in spite of knowing that weekends were mostly when his new posts would go up. In what seems to be fittingly poignant now, his first blog entry was of the Red deer that grace Blacka Moor (1). Neil would later say they were “right for the landscape” likening them to autochthons (2). While I occasionally see roe deer in my local woodland, Neil’s posts on the Red deer always made me envious (3-8) as did coming face to face with some when Neil walked me around Blacka Moor. They too would become imperilled as the momentum of the conservation industry’s dead hand spread to other publicly owned moorland around Blacka Moor (9). Neil was also enchanted by the trees on Blacka Moor, especially the birch (10) but they were also imperilled through tree persecution from the year on year felling that Sheffield Wildlife Trust once incredibly dubbed "Felling for Wilderness" (11). It seemed every February, Neil would have another photograph of a felled and stacked birch tree as though it was being got ready for flat packing (12-19). Neil was also fond of photographing the fungi on Blacka Moor (20-23) and as will be seen later, they too were not immune from the actions of the wildlife trust.

Modern philistines who don't know that they are damaging something precious

Neil set out the aims for his blog in typically forthright language, a manifestation of the inexorable nature of the forces that he was challenging (24):
“I spend a lot of time on Blacka Moor.
To me it's a special place. It changes with the seasons and over the years. And it has its secrets.
Unlike the other wide spaces on the west/south-west edges of Sheffield large parts of Blacka have been mercifully left alone for 60 years or so. Now all that is changing and I fear it will be for the worse. There is a new breed of interferers who think of themselves as conservationists. I prefer to think of them as managers - land managers. And they have some of the same characteristics as other managers in our increasingly managerialist culture. They want to control everything. To me they are the enemies of everything I enjoy about wild countryside.
This site and this blog is dedicated to celebrating the best of Blacka Moor and at the same time to exposing the unimaginative dealings of these modern philistines who don't know that they are damaging something precious”

Neil wasn’t foremostly an advocate for rewilding. He didn’t have to be, as the moor he walked had been restoring itself since the break from farming in 1933, when it was brought into public ownership (25). Instead, he became an articulate and powerful advocate against dewilding – the disastrous consequences of when the slavish dogma of mainstream conservation was applied by Sheffield Wildlife Trust after it was given a licence to manage the moor in 2001 and then erroneously given a long lease by Sheffield City Council in 2006 (25,26). This inevitably involved conservation grazing by cattle and sheep ostensibly to improve biodiversity, but in reality it was a reapplication of a farming pressure. Neil had a very direct way of describing this approach to nature conservation that was most obviously trashing the wetland wildflowers and paths, shown by providing photographic evidence of the impact, and revelling in the scatological imbecility of it, his colourful language identifying the “dung-lovers” or “ordurologists” that glorified in the “Lovely muck” (27):
“The area near the top gate should now become a tourist attraction for aficionados of the brown stuff. Blacka as is well known is part of a SSSI which stands for Site of Special S*** Interest. Further across to the north around Cowsick bog the cattle have been performing more heroic deeds: They have been doing their best to eliminate that vile weed Bog Asphodel which misguided visitors come to photograph in July. It will be interesting to see how successful they have been over the next weeks. Anyway I'm sure SWT will consider this....[two photos, before and after grazing] be an improvement on last year”

I understand Neil’s use of humour to take the sting out of what was desperately infuriating for him, but humour in the face of absurdity is also the way to puncture the dumb obduracy of the conservation industry when it comes to its response to criticism. It cuts through the saintly façade of the industry’s saviour complex when it is entirely unaccustomed to being challenged, and emboldens others to take a similar critical view. Neil took his ordurology seriously, cataloguing as many of the instances of excrescences that befell his eyes. Thus in July 2011, he poked at the vanity of habitat creation by the wildlife trust, pointing out that each time a habitat is created, another is destroyed, but that it was done in the certainty of knowing what was best – “In short, you are “playing God”. It's hard to make a distinction between this and gardening or farming; I would call it a mix of the two”(26). Neil saw it as an outright, top down assault on wild nature – from Natural England to Sheffield Wildlife Trust- in the hands of typically inadequately skilled “front line troops” employed by the trust. This gets Neil to his main point, and as always supported by photographic evidence (28):
“Here, on Blacka, we can see the result of a strategy that privileges dung flies and dung beetles, and cropped grass covered with faeces and brown stained with urine over fresh wild flowers and natural growth”

The sham of a consultation

Neil strode on with repeated pokes at the conservation grazing of Sheffield Wildlife Trust that revealed more of the festering reality of what was happening at Blacka Moor, such as the fact that unknown to local objectors the wildlife trust had entered into an agri-environment agreement on Blacka Moor in 2002, and thus years before it even had a lease on the land (29). It had also been receiving farm subsidy payments on Blacka Moor since 2003. This made the consultation process in 2006 with external facilitators Icarus even more of a sham than it was, being four years after that agreement, and thus indicating that the wildlife trust had no intention of changing course, whatever came out of the consultation. So that you can see how every story of conservation industry dewilding has common factors, I can remember the look of shock on the face of Roz Cullinan of Forest Neighbours, who was locked in a struggle with Staffordshire Wildlife Trust over its dewilding of GIb Torr (30) when I told her about the sham of a consultation led by Icarus over at Blacka Moor. Her response was “You made my blood run cold” - Staffordshire Wildlife Trust had also used Icarus as facilitators in the sham consultation with Forest Neighbours. The use of pliable patsies by wildlife trusts doesn’t end there as the Blacka Moor Grazing Impact Assessment commissioned by the Sheffield Wildlife Trust from Penny Anderson Associates in 2006 unsurprisingly delivered the expected justification for the grazing strategy at Blacka Moor (26,31). It was the same Penny Anderson Associates, commissioned by Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, that delivered in 2011 the expected justification for the clear felling of trees at Gib Torr after Forest Neighbours had forced the Forestry Commission to subject the felling licence application to an Environmental Impact Assessment (32).

It was a process of discovery for much of what Neil wrote about, using means that took some learning to understand them, myself included, such as working out the SSSI designation system and the agri-environment funding scheme and their implications for Blacka Moor. An important avenue was the use of Freedom of Information (FOI) requests that Neil first made to obtain the minutes of a closed meeting held back in October 2005 between Sheffield Wildlife Trust, English Nature (now Natural England) and the Peak District National Park Authority, in which it was agreed by those present that the issue of cattle grazing and fencing at Blacka Moor “should not be negotiable” (26). I think it was me that dug up the premature agri-environment agreement on the MAGIC mapping site (33) but then Neil made an FOI request to Natural England so that he could match what Sheffield Wildlife Trust was doing at Blacka Moor, compared to what it was being paid to do – “This is of course a major contentious item for the public. The grazing and farmification of Blacka was just what we had resisted” (29). Does it shock you that Neil found that the wildlife trust had made claims for payment for grazing for two years when there were no cattle there (29)? Following Neil’s lead, I have since made a number of FOI requests over the years as the only way to expose so much that is hidden from the public by the conservation industry –and it is hidden, as you can’t make FOI requests to wildlife trusts, but you can use roundabout ways to get at the information.

Crop and crap management

After he had exposed the moral corruptness of the agri-environment scheme, Neil came up with a perfect description of it - “Conservation grazing as currently favoured by the challenged local conservation workers could well be called Crop and Crap Management” (34). There was a wicked impishness in Neil, who would always rile at the latest self-serving propaganda notices that Sheffield Wildlife Trust would post at the entry gate to Blacka Moor – “Even as we open the gate onto the moor we can't miss that notice telling us that “Highland Cattle are Grazing the Heathland of Blacka”. I wouldn’t know who wrote the words ‘crapping over’ as a substitute for ‘grazing’ but it was closer to reality than the virtual message of the original. Only one highland is there – the others are a mixed bag”(35). He was not above the odd bit of poetry– “it's that land which was ungrazed for much of last year and which was full of wild flowers before sheep and their crapping returned from late summer to be joined by cows and their ditto, or should that be sh***o?” but he was exasperated that there was no reflection of the reality of the effect of grazing in the mainstream media – “Does the wider public know about this? Does the BBC wildlife programming talk about this? Do the newspapers in their weekend country columns mention this? When will they start doing so and stop recycling conservation industry press releases?” (36). He only once allowed that the livestock produced any benefit – “The dreary turd-infested grassland of the sheep pasture has one redeeming feature best seen in an extended mild autumn such as this year’s. It becomes home to various fungi including examples of waxcaps over which mycologists have been known to get excited” but he did not resile from his central thesis of the “devastating effect on the landscape produced by the present policy of default sheep crop-and-crap management (37).

Neil would return to his ordurological observations over the years, such as this from June 2012 – “Once through the gate we're in the middle of it. What's not been chewed has been defecated over. Crop and crap management at its immeasurable best. Just what the C.A.P. ordered. Yellow flies, as ever, a bonus” (38) and in April 2014, when commenting on another propaganda notice from Sheffield Wildlife Trust that suggested cattle dung was important for insects, and the chicks and fledglings that feed on them – “But the question that haunts me is: if shit is so wonderful for wild places and biodiversity why do they not transport the SWT HQ lavatory output onto the moors on a daily basis? There will surely be insect and micro-organisms that will relish it. Biodiversity is everything” (39). In August 2014, Neil took a poke at the how the National Trust managed its Longshaw Estate nearby to Blacka Moor, as the National Trust was also one of the partners in the second massive expansion of neoliberal control of public land in the Sheffield Moors Partnership when Sheffield City Council leased over substantial moorland areas in Burbage, Houndkirk and Hathersage Moors – “It’s fortuitous that the crop-and-crap ‘conservation grazing’ management still hasn’t found a way to get the sheep and cows to devour all mushrooms though they do tread and at times defecate on them” (40). Neil’s abhorrence of crop and crap management reached a zenith in May 2016 when he laid out in parodic style what were the “Advantages of Farmification on Public Land” number five being: “Er, shit - plenty of it - cow pats, splatters, soggy puddles of the stuff, plentifully inhabited by those charming yellow flies that live on it, all tastefully decorating the paths which are the cows' preferred dropping zones. Wildlife, such as deer for example, are such a disappointment in this respect and very rarely drop on paths, which is why good farmification managers are always talking of culling” (41). Neil exemplified a particular bug bear of mine in his next point – “As an addition to the previous point, the pervading smell of farm animals and the aroma of urine that wafts enticingly in the breeze, something that is quite absent on a boring natural site with its disquieting and unreal sense of freshness”. We would laugh ourselves silly when Britain’s National Parks went in to an absurd partnership with an air freshener company that would produce “fragrances” that had been “blended to evoke the spirit of the National Parks” (42) because we knew that the one for the Peak District National Park really should have smelt of excrement.

Scrutiny, or the lack of it, goes to the heart of our dispute

I could see Neil was a strong advocate of local democracy in all things, not just in conservation matters, because he took on personal responsibility for action, as well as seeking the involvement of others. He made it his duty to harry Sheffield City Council about its negligible but required oversite of Sheffield Wildlife Trusts actions at Blacka Moor (43, 44) would go to community assembly meetings of the local authority, and always turn up at consultation meetings about the further spread of the neo-liberal control of public lands in the process of being sloughed off by the Peak District National Park to the Eastern Moors Partnership, or Sheffield City Council in sloughing off Burbage, Houndkirk and Hathersage Moors to the Sheffield Moors Partnership, and where he would offer a counter view to the cosy stitch ups going on. He was once an attendee of the Reserve Advisory Group of Blacka Moor, but the regularity of its meetings tailed off - it was clearly a sop by Sheffield Wildlife Trust to appear to allow local people to have their say, degenerating into a rubber stamp when there were only the compliant left (45, 46). Neil noted the passing of the Reserve Advisory Group, replaced by a dumbed down version that would meet only twice a year, the Blacka Moor Users Forum (47). Tellingly, Neil revealed that a “secret 'conservation group' selected and appointed by a closed circle and representing just those 'on board' will meet four times a year”. The egalitarian in Neil revolted at this - “Scrutiny, or the lack of it, goes to the heart of our dispute with SRWT [Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust – not sure when Rotherham was added], with SCC [Sheffield City Council] and with SMP [Sheffield Moors Partnership]. With public land and assets there is an important role for the public. But not according to those mentioned. They will do their best to wriggle out of any process of critical examination. They fear that any meaningful process of scrutiny might mean their having to respond to questions and the answers they give may be received with scepticism, even derision” (47) as he did also over the secretiveness of Sheffield City Councils Cabinet approval of the leasing of Burbage, Houndkirk and Hathersage Moors to the Sheffield Moors Partnership (9,48)

Neil and I often wondered how the consultation process could be wrested away from its control by the conservation industry, because there never was a blank sheet with them when they always turned up with their plans already formulated. I made the suggestion of a citizens panels whereby the panel would call and question witnesses as well as being able to call on expert testimony, and I still do even though nobody has taken me up on it (49). Neil alighted on an organisation that he hoped could deliver something similar. In late 2012, he contacted Action for Involvement, an independent think tank founded in 2006 to bring people in communities together with policymakers and stakeholders, explaining that there was a democratic deficit in the way decisions were being made about the publicly owned moorlands above Sheffield. The method of working was to create space in workshop format to pool ideas and confront contentious issues. I think the lure of having someone like George Monbiot along that Neil dangled in front of the organisation – and not just me - was a strong point in getting them interested. However, Monbiot really messed things up for me when he gave his availability, as he had forgotten to put an event at Ennerdale in his diary when he offered up his dates, and which I was also attending. Moreover, he was just going to turn up by train to Whitehaven because he didn't even know that the Ennerdale meeting was being held in the valley. As he hadn’t been to Ennerdale before, he suggested that I get up at 5am to walk him around the valley before having to go straight from the valley, driving the 180 miles to Sheffield. I declined.

Action for Involvement used their first newsletter in March 2013 to paint a background to the workshop on Sheffield Moors & Uplands (see Sheffield Moors Consultation from pg. 7 in (50)) where the influence of Neil is acknowledged. An event program and a brochure introducing the speakers and their topics was posted in April, and I have to say that it jogged my memory as I don’t remember anything Monbiot spoke about other than his usual story about hefflalumps (51,52). Neil posted up notice on his blog of the meeting in early June (53) and then made some post-conference remarks where he said the “Sheffield Moors Partnership people got into a tangle” as they exhibited an “institutional nimbyism” in not wanting to hear he message of the day, of the removal of a farming pressure (54):
“They had recently of course completed their own Master Plan for the Sheffield Moors and it insists on having 'extensive grazing' and plenty of management intervention. So they could hardly agree could they? So we had the spectacle of Roy Taylor of RSPB saying he was all in favour of rewilding but not on his patch thank you. Let it happen in the Lake District or somewhere. This was music to the ears of the National Trust and Sheffield Wildlife Trust who, along with RSPB and Sheffield City Council, had indicated in their draft Master Plan that what they were doing was creating a model for the way all UK uplands should be managed”

What a ghastly thought. I think it was Roy Taylor from the RSPB who came up to me after all the talks and said that he had never been called a neo-liberal, a term I had used to describe what had happened in the take-over of publicly owned land by the unaccountable NGOs managing the Eastern Moors and Sheffield Moors Partnerships eg. RSPB, National Trust, Wildlife Trust (9, 55). Anyway, Monbiot had fixed up a site visit the next day to the Eastern Moors with the RSPB, and Neil was later to suggest that this visit was an attempt by the RSPB to persuade Monbiot that he was “misguided in his criticism of the interventionist management which he described in his book as a Conservation Prison” (56). Monbiot had written a guest article for the RSPB blog on his train journey home. As Neil noted, Monbiot was polite at first, but then returned to his main theme that the management of the moors desperately needed to be reviewed. Neil quoted a large passage where Monbiot faced up to the argument from the conservation industry that it had to follow the rules, by saying it was time to challenge the rules –“Isn’t it time we began to question the way sites are designated, and to challenge the ecological blitzkreig required to maintain them in what is laughably called “favourable condition”? Isn’t it time we began asking why we have decided to privilege certain species over others? Isn’t it time we started wondering whether the collateral damage required to support them is worth it? After all, how did nature cope before we came along? To judge by the actions of British conservation groups, it must have been in a pretty dismal state for the three billion years before humans arrived to look after it” (56)

There’s no indication that the management understands the balance across the whole area of deer impact

In the article itself, Monbiot challenged the conservation industry’s obsession with heather, noting that in the Eastern Moors management plan, published by the RSPB and the National Trust, that “cutting and burning” were listed as the required tasks for managing heather (57). The same plan revealed the dogma of cattle grazing that was alleged to “improve the condition of the habitats and benefit wildlife”. Monbiot was astonished that statements like that were “left unpacked” in that some species may benefit, but at the expense of others. Monbiot also noted the persecution of trees in favouring breeding populations of wading birds. What he didn’t mention, probably because the RSPB didn’t want him to hear it, was that the potential culling of red deer on the moors that had been a long running sore, until Neil finally gave us the news a few months later that the RSPB was going ahead with a cull. Neil was angry at the lack of transparency from the RSPB in that they issued a statement about the cull only after he had publicised the cull in the Sheffield Telegraph and on the Sheffield Forum – “That indicates an intention to keep the decision quiet and only to respond if the whistle was blown. It’s categorically not transparency. In fact it indicates a disrespect for the public, some may say contempt. The implication is that people in general cannot be trusted to understand their actions in these complex matters” (58). Neil then exposed the nonsense of the argument put forward by the RSPB for the cull that if left unchecked the deer would “over-utilise the resources on the moors and have to spread further afield to find food and shelter, reducing the amount of wildlife the moors can support”. Neil pointed out that there was an assumption that the deer spent all their time in one place when they had already distributed within the moors – “There’s no indication that the management understands the balance across the whole area of deer impact nor any idea that they have considered impacts on Blacka and elsewhere. Nor do they tell us that farm animals will be removed!”. Neil’s latter point seems to me the most cogent one. How could the RSPB accuse a wild animal from over-utilising resources when it had imposed cattle grazing? Do they think people are stupid not to realise the contradiction in this?

When I wrote about the inexorable offloading of public land on the eastern edge of the Peak District to the conservation industry, I pointed out that it would get a legacy payment, but more importantly that it was also pocketing agri-environment scheme funding (9). I have described this reliance on agri-environment funding as the “business model” of the conservation industry that locks the land into a prescribed regime – inevitably livestock grazing - for the 10 year life of the agreement (59) and, as shown on Blacka Moor, is quickly replaced by another 10 year agreement when the first expires (60). It always seemed to me that it was a death knell on the aspiration of people for their local, publicly owned land, taking away their right to have a say on what happens on their land, and butting them up against a total lack of accountability. Worse still for the eastern moors overall, these two Partnership areas totals a large block of about 5,500ha of contiguous moorland, an area of land that is a lost opportunity for devising a plan for truly wild nature at a significant scale (9). However, it seems I have got it all wrong. The peripatetic mainstreamer of rewilding employed by REFARMING Britain (61) has led the RSPB to think that its management approach on the eastern moors gets it on to the rewilding spectrum (62,63). Given what I have explained, can this be anywhere but bumping along the bottom? Moreover, given the prescriptive nature of agri-environment funding, can there be any aspiration for moving up the spectrum? Is shooting Red deer but grazing cattle in any way consistent with rewilding? Neil was always sceptical about REFARMING Britain, especially by its lack of accountability. I think he would not be happy with the way REFARMING Britain has displayed their lack of knowledge of what has gone before with these moors, and the dead hand that the prescribed management delivers. He may also have been uncomfortable with the current trend of this peripatetic mainstreamer to glad hand and please everybody, and in doing so, redefine rewilding away from its origins. To quote Anthony Sinclair – “if a word – restoration or rewilding – applies to everything, it also means nothing” (64)

I could be the only person taking a contrary position

Almost four years ago, Neil posted a short article on his blog about its future, and of the Friends of Blacka Moor (65). He wanted regular readers to contact him, as he had a message he wanted to share, a slight subterfuge in that Neil didn’t want the conservation industry knowing what he was up to. Well, I did so, and Neil replied that he was puzzled as to who was reading his blog, he feared it may just be those that he abused, like the wildlife trust and its hangers on. He said it was frustrating when people had told him that he was doing a good job in exposing the conservation industry, but declined to do something themselves, writing it off as a lost cause. He was tired of appearing to be the only one doing anything, and he knew that this played into the hands of the conservation industry, as the latter could write off any importance of Neil’s views – “I could be the only person taking a contrary position - if I even bother to turn up”. This was a far cry from the days of when the Friends had gathered 761 signatures to a petition that called for Blacka Moor to be kept free from cattle and barbed wire, and for the City Council not to seek the Charity Commission’s permission to alter the original 1933 Graves Covenant that gave ownership of the moor to the city council, but which prevented it from a change of use other than for public open access to the moor for walks and pleasure grounds (25). I guess Neil was looking for a mandate to continue, to feel that he still had some backing, and be representative of other people, as well as himself.

I see from my reply to Neil that I knew what he was thinking – “Pushing at a sponge, trying to plug all the holes, and every other aphorism you can think of!” I ventured that it may not be our generation that sees the results of better thinking on wild nature, but that I was convinced that there was a great untapped constituency of younger people, inevitably urban, who feel disenfranchised from their natural heritage. I told him that I was going to have a break from chasing the destruction of wild nature from site to site, the dewilding, pointing out the obvious when it did not lead to any change, that I had really lost interest in knocking against the immoveable. I explained I was instead going to put down markers, a sort of road map on ecological restoration that apart from any high minded intent, had to be about what I was learning from (and been fun!) and which may be of interest to others who have an attention span greater than a gnat. It was an oblique way of encouraging Neil to continue with is blog, for its portrayal of the wild nature of Blacka Moor, and his puncturing of absurdity. I never asked him about his health, he would rarely mention it, and he kept blogging up to a few weeks before his death. His last blog entry is entitled “Recovery….” under which he wrote “When this happens it will be good to get back to Blacka. Spring is such a marvellous time” (66). Spring is a wonderful time for wild nature, it is when we see the annual recovery from the winter period, and I will remember Neil every time it comes around.

Mark Fisher 25 May 2018

(1) Deer over Dore, The Blacka Moor Site 20 January 2007

(2) Autochthon - Animals in Their Landscape, The Blacka Moor Site 31 October 2008

(3) First Glimpse, The Blacka Moor Site 7 September 2009

(4) Biodiversity Scam, The Blacka Moor Site 1 October 2011

(5) Mixed News, The Blacka Moor Site 31 January 2013

(6) Abandoned, The Blacka Moor Site 17 July 2013

(7) Innocent or Guilty, The Blacka Moor Site 31 May 2014

(8) Unequal Companions, The Blacka Moor Site 29 December 2016

(9) Nature improvement and restoration areas - are they a step towards rewilding? Self-willed land June 2011

(10) Birch Appeal, The Blacka Moor Site 22 February 2013

(11) "Felling for Wilderness", The Blacka Moor Site 25 September 2011

(12) Leg Cocking, The Blacka Moor Site 14 February 2012

(13) The Farming Agenda, The Blacka Moor Site 25 February 2014

(14) Masterly, The Blacka Moor Site 22 February 2015

(15) Wreckage, The Blacka Moor Site 16 February 2016

(16) Covenant Violation, The Blacka Moor Site 21 February 2016

(17) Fly-Tipping Cowboys, The Blacka Moor Site 24 February 2016

(18) Birch Beloved?, The Blacka Moor Site 25 February 2017

(19) Wasteland, The Blacka Moor Site 14 February 2018

(20) Best Avoided, The Blacka Moor Site 21 October 2007

(21) "Too, too" pretty, The Blacka Moor Site 19 October 2012

(22) Looking Down, The Blacka Moor Site 29 October 2015

(23) Bad Species, The Blacka Moor Site 9 October 2015

(24) Why a Blacka Moor Blog? The Blacka Moor Site 26 March 2007

(25) Blacka Moor in peril from the conservation professionals, Self-willed land December 2005

(26) Four strands of barbed wire - a Blacka Moor update, Self-willed land March 2007

(27) What's your 'ology? The Blacka Moor Site 28 June 2011

(28) Vanity, vanity, The Blacka Moor Site 22 July 2011

(29) Public Money and Public Scrutiny, The Blacka Moor Site 6 September 2011

(30) The defence of woodland – Forest Neighbours and Gib Torr, Self-willed land January 2010

(31) ..... in for a Pound, The Blacka Moor Site 19 February 2018

(32) Environmental Statement, Black Brook Plantation EIA Forestry Regulations, Penny Anderson Associates Ltd. for Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, March 2011$file/eng-BLACKBROOKPLANTATIONRESTORATIONPROJECT.pdf

(33) MAGIC, Natural England

(34) Crop and Crap, The Blacka Moor Site 8 September 2011

(35) Self Assessment, The Blacka Moor Site 14 September 2011

(36) Crop and Crap...and Crap...and Crap again, The Blacka Moor Site 27 September 2011

(37) Underground, Overground (3), The Blacka Moor Site 6 November 2011

(38) The 'Berlin Fence' ?, The Blacka Moor Site 27 June 2012

(39) A Devastating Riposte to 'Crop and Crap'? The Blacka Moor Site 28 April 2014

(40) Longshaw and the National Trust, The Blacka Moor Site 25 August 2014

(41) Why Farm Here? Advantages of Farmification on Public Land, The Blacka Moor Site May 2016

(42) Air Wick partners with UK's National Parks, National Parks UK Press Release 11 February 2014

(43) Reasonable Questions, The Blacka Moor Site 5 March 2015

(44) Charitable Land: Who Cares? The Blacka Moor Site 4 December 2015

(45) RAG, The Blacka Moor Site 31 July 2013

(46) The Killing of the RAG, The Blacka Moor Site 7 October 2015

(47) Blacka Moor Users Forum, The Blacka Moor Site 3 May 2015

(48) Secrets and Lies, The Blacka Moor Site 27 September 2015

(49) The continuing destruction of our native trophic pyramid, Self-willed land February 2018

(50) Action for Involvement Newsletter Issue No 1. March 2013

(51) Programme, Public Event, Workshop & Networking Thursday 27th June 2013

(52) About Us, Public Event,Workshop & Networking

(53) Rewilding, George Monbiot and Action for Involvement in Sheffield, The Blacka Moor Site 4 June 2013

(54) Managerial Nimbyism, The Blacka Moor Site 1 July 2013

(55) Fisher, M. (2013) Blacka Moor – Who decides? The lost opportunities. Wildland Research Institute, A4I 27 June 2013

(56) Monbiot, RSPB and the Eastern Moors, The Blacka Moor Site 29 July 2013

(57) Going wild: a guest blog from George Monbiot, RSPB blog 15 July 2013

(58) How They Play With Us, The Blacka Moor Site 30 March 2015

(59) The New Enclosures, Self-willed land September 2012

(60) The moral corruptness of Higher Level Stewardship, Self-willed land 5 August, 11 August 2013

(61) On a mission to mainstream rewilding, Alastair Driver, Rewilding Britain 17 May 2018

(62) @JFDIecologist, Tweet 16 May 2018

(63) @AliDriver, Tweet 20 May 2018

(64) The Future of Conservation: Lessons From the Past and the Need for Rewilding of Ecosystems, Prof Anthony Sinclair, Sustaining Our World Lecture 4 April 2017, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, College of the Environment, University of Washington, Seattle

(65) FUTURE OF THIS BLOG, The Blacka Moor Site 10 September 2014

(66) Recovery....., 2 The Blacka Moor Site 7 March 2018