Our local library lies adjacent to the old registery office, which was been bought, leased, resold, leased again and god only knows what else; it's a complex process.
The issue is not with the building itself, it lies with the little green space between the two buildings. Part of the leasehold agreement, indeed a contract, is that this area should be turned into a car park, a car park that the current owners of the building do not want, but if it isn't built the council face a 600K bill for breach of contract with a previous owner.
I think that's the story; I'm probably miles wrong. It's very confusing. The upshot is that three old trees, a lime and two sycamores, are going to have to be cut down, and local people have gotten very upset. Indeed, they have already organised two daytime protests during the last couple of weekends, and tonight, they organised a third, a candlelit vigil by night.
They say that the car park isn't needed, there is already plenty of parking space in the town, and it sends out a bad message in an age where we shouldn't be encouraging more cars onto the roads, into a town that is already gridlocked at weekends.
I went down not long before sunset to take photographs, and told the organisers that I would return later with my bat detector; they have put a couple of bat boxes in the trees, and St George's Bat trust say the recorded 108 calls in 40 minutes a few days ago.
If there are bats roosting in the trees, then that automatically ends the threat for at least until spring. I have to say I'd been twice before and picked up nothing, but absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
I did return after sunset to see that a crowd of around 200 had gathered, holding lanterns and the like. I walked around with my detector, picking up no bats again while the song "Chasing Cars" by Snow Patrol was played while the crowd waved their lights in the air.
I hope the bats like bands that make Coldplay sound like Motorhead.
There was also some chanting of slogans, which was passionate although slightly...something.
I do wish them well, and I really hope there are bats in there. I've not picked up a sausage.
All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 30.10.21