Moral Dilemma

Supporters of the Heart of the Levels Group may be aware of the interest provoked by the announcement of two new Vice Presidents of the Somerset Wildlife Trust. The gist of the Twitter and Facebook comments is that despite these nominees being supporters of the Trust, their personal beliefs are incompatible with the objectives and aims of the Trust.

Having read through most of these comments, I have a real concern that in making their opinions known, which all of us are entitled and should be encouraged to do, the withdrawal of support to the organisation strikes at the heart of our belief that wildlife needs protection, nurturing and management for it to prosper. And for that to happen, it needs our money and our support to ensure that our wildlife projects are resourced and our reserves are looked after. It is equally important that those people who work on behalf of wildlife, are appreciated through our membership.

Taking a management decision can often result in unintended consequences and similarly, taking a high moral stance can unwittingly cause damage to that in which we truly believe. My personal view could be considered to be myopic – that we must not endanger the work that goes on in managing Great Breach Wood, Aller Wood, Dundon Beacon, Prospect Fields, Green Down and the many other fabulous sites in our area, nor in promoting the greater understanding of wildlife in this region through talks and walks. The management of the Trust will undoubtedly be debating this issue and will keep us informed of their position.  In the meantime, I very much hope that we can continue to rely on your support to the Heart of the Levels.

Roger Dickey

Chairman, Heart of the Levels Group

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