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Residents block UK billionaire’s vineyard plans

Plans for Britain’s largest vineyard have been put on hold due to traffic and badger issues.

An almost three-hour planning committee meeting was held Wednesday evening at Medway Council in Kent, south-east England, to determine the fate of an English wine producer’s proposal to build what would be Britain’s largest vineyard and visitor center.

This expansive and contemporary £ 30million ($ 39.7million) project – named the Kentish Wine Vault (KWV) – would be built on Green Belt land located in a designated Area of ​​Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), surrounding the small village of Cuxton, on the North Downs.

Mark Dixon, billionaire owner of MDCV UK (and its sister company, Vineyard Farms Ltd) wants to build KWV on his 1,200-acre Luddesdown farm.
KWV would have a total area of ​​15,912 square meters – larger than two football fields – and would include a coffee shop, tasting room and parking. It would include an energy center to create biogas, but would not have solar panels. Elegantly designed by Lord Foster, 85% of the facility would be built underground over two floors.

MDCV UK owns the Seddlescome organic estate in Sussex, where it has put its Kingscote estate up for sale to focus its business efforts in Kent. It also owns wineries in Essex. The company, Britain’s largest winery, said it is investing a total of £ 60million in expansion plans, which will double its current wine area to 647 hectares (1,600 acres) in ‘by 2023.

Dixon, a Monaco resident, who also owns several wineries in Provence, including Chateau de Berne, now wants to make five million bottles of English wine at KWV by 2025.

Reflecting the dynamic nature of the English wine market, Dixon turned the classic and sometimes drab world of English wine upside down by focusing production primarily on organic wines of the Prosecco-style Charmat method, rather than the traditional fizz method. His decision to tap into the much larger Prosecco market – around 80 million bottles are sold annually in the UK – rather than the smaller traditional sparkling wine market, has ruffled the feathers of the English wine industry, which largely focuses on more expensive wines. Champagne-inspired wine production. After releasing its first Harlot sparkling sparkling wine this year, MDCV UK plans to release two new Prosecco-style sparkling wines in 2022.

Prior to the multi-stakeholder planning committee meeting, Medway Council planning officer Dylan Campbell recommended approval of KWV’s plans.

Wine vs local government

In contrast, in November of this year, a Gravesham Council planning officer withdrew an application for a winery and visitor center offered by Meophams Vineyard – located just 4.8 miles from Cuxton – due the design of the proposed winery, but also because of its impact on road traffic and badgers.

Campbell said in his planning report that no environmental impact assessment (EIA) would be required for KWV’s plans, which he said would “have little negative impact on the environment. environment, alone or in combination with other developments in terms of the use of natural resources, the production of waste, pollution and nuisances and risks to human health “.

In March of this year, the Evremond de Taittinger Estate in Chilham, Kent – located about 30 miles south of Cuxton – won a case in the High Court of England, which had been brought against him by a local resident on the decision of a local council to grant a building permit to Champagne. Proposal of the producer to build a cellar and a reception center, two-thirds of which will be built underground. Taittinger, aims to produce 400,000 bottles of English sparkling wine in Kent each year.

© KWV
| About 85 percent of the structure would be built underground.

The elegance of the KWV design and plans to increase biodiversity, with meadows, trees and hedges and reduce carbon emissions, ensure energy efficiency and mitigate climate change and plan services electric shuttles from four stations, has so far failed to convince residents and councilors that KWV is beneficial to the local community, many of whom believe the development is being done solely in the business interests of MDCV UK.

Gary Smith, managing director of MDCV UK, however, told Wine-Searcher that the plans would create new jobs, boost tourism, improve biodiversity and environmental management of the land, while providing broader community benefits including points. charging station for electric vehicles and a new café.

“The Kentish Wine Vault will bring a multi-million pound investment in the economy, achieve the highest sustainability standards and put Medway at the heart of the English wine market,” Smith said.

Councilors, however, fear that local roads, already congested at times, could be crowded with heavy-duty trucks, buses and cars.

Although supported by the Environment Agency and Natural England, the KWV plans are not supported by the Cuxton Parish Council or the Kent AONB. Waste of water, landscape and lighting problems and the construction of a new road are among the bones of contention.

At the Cuxton councilor meeting, Matt Fearn described KWV as “a large mixed-use commercial development masquerading as agricultural (wine production) trying to meet the exceptional criteria required for construction in a protected area”.

On Wednesday, Medway’s planning committee ultimately voted unanimously, except one abstention, to postpone the decision on its clearance rather than reject it. Many advisers were concerned about the impact of the winery visitor center, rather than the winery and wine production. Councilor Stephen Hubbard said he was against including the visitor center in the basement due to the subsequent impact of tourist trafficking.

Even if it revises its plans before the next council meeting in 2022, MDCV UK is unlikely to remove its reception center. benefited from local tourism and stays during the Covid pandemic.

In the age of climate change, convincing the local community and regional advisers of the benefits of KWV remains a challenge, but Smith is not deterred by the task. “After the postponement decision, we will now work with the Medway Council to provide detailed answers to the important questions raised by the advisers,” he said.

“A tremendous amount of work has gone into designing a world-class winery and we are confident that the members of the planning committee will be able to approve the plans in the coming months,” he said. added.

On Wednesday evening, Councilor Chris Buckwell, chairman of the Medway board meeting, raised a question about the symbolism of a punnet of grapes, which had been anonymously left on the board table. He brought a touch of humor to a serious debate considered by many to be of crucial importance to the future of the English countryside and its burgeoning wine industry.


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Call for tenders to repair the North Mole in Whanganui

An aerial view of the North Mole of Whanganui. Photo / provided

Refurbishment and repair work on the North Mole is expected to begin in mid-December, in another milestone for Te Pūwaha – the Whanganui Port Revitalization Project.

The construction works will cover the 900m length of the embankment from the end of the North Mole to the port of Whanganui. This work, as well as the scheduled repair work on the South Mole, is essential to allow an operational port.

The two moles define the mouth of the river and ensure that a navigable depth is maintained for ships. Repairing them is also necessary to protect nearby developments and critical urban infrastructure from flooding.

This project, under Te Pūwaha, is managed by the Horizons Regional Council and undertaken by Cashmore Contracting, with work scheduled to continue until November 2022. During construction, there will be limits to public access to the North Mole and backfill, with no authorized access to construction areas.

Public access to the area from the parking lot at the top of the north pier to the end of the pier will be limited for three to four months from January 2022. This will allow construction of this complex part of the project to be completed. during the summer months when the weather is generally quieter. However, there is good news for recreational users.

“Although public access is limited throughout the construction period, we are aware of the recreational value of the area and the importance of the fishery to the local community,” said Craig Grant, Head of the management of the rivers of the Horizons group.

“With this in mind, we have developed a construction plan to allow recreational and fishing access at all times to certain sectors along the 900 meters of the work.

“While it can be frustrating at times for those who regularly fish for moles, we appreciate their patience. The reward will be a much safer mole, with debris removed and pedestrian access at the end.”

Public access to the entire area will also be available during the two weeks of Christmas and New Years.

While there will be no access to the parking lot above the pier for three to four months, the closed parking lot at the end of Morgan St will be accessible to the public at all times. Sand will be managed during construction to ensure it remains clear for vehicles.

The rehabilitation and repair of North Mole is jointly funded by the Horizons Regional Council, Whanganui District Council and Kānoa – Regional Economic Development & Investment Unit. In addition to this funded structural work, Te Pūwaha project leaders prepared an ambitious conceptual plan for the North Mole and surrounding area.

    Jock Lee leads community engagement at Te Pūwaha.  Photo / Bevan Conley
Jock Lee leads community engagement at Te Pūwaha. Photo / Bevan Conley

Te Pūwaha governance group member Jock Lee helped facilitate this work.

“We are working collectively to create a community facility that we can all be proud of, one in which we can celebrate the importance of the Whanganui River, and of course continue to do the things we love to do like fishing and surfing,” did he declare. noted.

Concept project for changes in North Mole, related to Te Pūwaha.  Image / provided
Concept project for changes in North Mole, related to Te Pūwaha. Image / provided

The activities planned under the North Mole concept will need more funding and partnerships must be found to ensure that they come to fruition. The proposed activities are likely to be carried out over several years.

In the meantime, community engagement on the project is ongoing and members of the public can express interest in the updates by visiting www.whanganui.govt.nz/port.


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Edinburgh Morrisons will see Costa’s drive-thru built in parking lot despite huge objections

An Edinburgh Morrisons is expected to see a new Costa drive-thru built in the parking lot despite a wave of local objections.

The plans are expected to be granted by city council next week after the initial proposals were submitted in the summer of this year.

According to plans, the supermarket at 102 Pilton Drive will see a section of the parking lot transformed into an easy-access café, which will have both walk-in and drive-thru facilities.

Drawings have shown that the drive-thru will be located next to the entrance to the Morrisons parking lot, across from the gas station.

In addition to the main building, a few disabled parking spaces will also be created alongside a few outdoor rest areas.

READ MORE – Watch the progress on Edinburgh’s tram network as the second anniversary approaches

The new building will see around 50 parking spaces lost for Morrisons, with local residents complaining that the move will cause further congestion in the area.

Logging into Ferry Road and sitting near the Crewe Toll roundabout, the plans saw 58 objections out of 60 public comments, with residents warning the area is already prone to long traffic jams.

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A resident said: “There is no legitimate reason to encourage more people to drive on Pilton Drive, the current traffic light sequences are already not suited to the level of traffic entering Morrisons.

“Encouraging more people to come into this parking lot just to have coffee ‘driving’ is a bad idea, they will create more traffic at the junction and only increase road rage and blocked junctions.”

However, the board’s development and sub-management committee submitted a report this week suggesting the proposals should be allowed to go ahead.

The review indicated that an impact on congestion was not as likely as locals claimed, adding:

“In terms of the impact on climate change, pollution and the incentive to travel by car, the proposed development will be accessible on foot, by bicycle and by public transport.

“Transportation information has shown that most trips to the cafe and drive-thru will be existing trips of those already going to the supermarket or gas station or those passing by the application site.

“While not entirely sustainable development in terms of travel, the proposal provides for sustainable access and is within walking distance of nearby residential development. “

The plans have been recommended to be granted, but a final decision will be made on Wednesday, December 8.


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A woman lifts a cane to the store manager; $ 1,200 in stolen ring from letterbox area; Berea police blotter

BEREA, Ohio –

Disturbance: East Bagley Road

A woman from Berea, 54, was banned from Walgreens, 6 East Bagley, after raising her cane to a store manager.

The woman was waiting inside the store near the pharmacy. The manager told him the pharmacy was closed for the day. It was then that the woman raised her cane threateningly.

The woman and the manager exchanged words, and the manager asked the woman to leave the store. The woman refused, so the manager called the police.

The woman told police the manager spoke to her in a disrespectful tone. She insulted the director. The woman was emotional and upset that she had not been able to get her medication. Police escorted the woman out of the store and informed her that she would be charged with trespassing if she ever returned.

Grand Theft: Barrett Road

A tenant at the Tower in the Park apartments, 55 Barrett, called the police around 11:30 a.m. on November 29 and said a $ 1,200 ring delivered to him was stolen from the mailbox at the apartment building.

According to the U.S. Postal Service, the ring was delivered around 11 a.m. on November 28, but was not there when the tenant went to her mailbox. The postmaster told the woman the postman left the ring on the floor under the mailbox, instead of placing it in a locked parcel locker, as Postal Service policy requires.

Tower in the Park management said they would turn the surveillance video of the mailbox area to the police.

Driving a Vehicle Under the Influence: Mulberry Street

A Strongsville man, 47, was arrested around 2 a.m. on November 25 after police saw him driving at 47 mph on Prospect Street near Aaron Street, a 35 mph zone.

The man’s Toyota Camry also drifted left of center. Police stopped the car after turning onto Mulberry Street. The man smelled of alcohol and his eyes were glassy. He failed field sobriety tests.

Flight: Barrett Road

A tool bag containing hand saws, channel locks, gloves, files, adjustable wrenches, diagnostic tools, levels and other items was reported missing around 4:30 p.m. on November 26 in the second floor hallway of the Tower in the Park apartments, 55 Barrett.

The tools belonged to an apartment maintainer. The estimated value of the tools was $ 1,000.

Expired license plates, possession of marijuana: Eastland Road

A Brook Park man, 21, was cited around 8:30 p.m. on November 24 after police caught him driving with a suspended license.

The man drew attention to himself when he suddenly accelerated his Ford Taurus and aggressively changed lanes on West Bagley Road. Police checked his license plate number and learned that his license expired in September.

The man turned on Eastland and the police stopped his car on Eastland near University Street. They smelled marijuana in the car. The front passenger, a 20-year-old man from Brook Park, admitted he had a bag of marijuana in his backpack. The police confiscated the marijuana.

Property found: Franklin Drive

A Franklin man called police around 5:30 p.m. on November 26 after finding what he described as a rifle inside a gun holster near his home.

The rifle and holster were in hedges beside the man’s house. He didn’t know how long the objects had been there.

Police identified the weapon as a .177 caliber Gamo Swarm Maxxim G2 multi-shot pellet rifle with an attached scope. Rust was on the barrel of the rifle and bugs had infested the rifle and the holster.

Cannabis: West Bagley Road

Police notified an 18-year-old Cleveland woman after noticing her Ford Fusion did not have a visible license plate.

Police stopped the woman’s car on West Bagley, near Seminary Street. They saw a temporary Ohio tag partially stuck to the rear window.

In addition, the police smelled marijuana in the car. The woman handed over a small plastic bag containing the marijuana. Police confiscated the marijuana for destruction.

Assisted Fire Department: West Fifth Street

A West Fifth man, 49, was taken to Parma University Hospitals Medical Center around 2:30 a.m. on November 23 after ingesting fentanyl in his apartment at Christopher Apartments on West Fifth.

A roommate called the police about the man. When the police arrived, the man was crouched on the ground. He was shirtless and waved his arms. He had broken a glass earlier.

At approximately 4:45 a.m. on November 28, police were again called to the man’s apartment after inhaling fentanyl. When the police arrived he was restless but conscious and able to answer questions. He was taken to the Southwest General Health Center in Middleburg Heights.

Police noted that in 2021, paramedics were called to the man’s apartment a total of 14 times after the man ingested fentanyl, another drug or combinations of drugs. Additionally, the man was wanted by Berea Police for possession of heroin, but was not arrested after being taken to Southwest General.


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Family fined £ 60 for spending 12 minutes driving through car park looking for space

Exclusive:

The family were surprised to get a ticket despite never getting out of their car or shutting down the engine – but the parking lot operator insists the fine is deserved

Family fined £ 60 for spending too much time in a car park, even though they never turned off the engine

A family has been fined £ 60 for driving through a busy car park even though they never parked.

Julie Sutcliffe, 51, was on a family vacation to Cornwall in August.

On August 12, they visited Newquay, which was very busy at the time, and the family struggled to find a parking space.

They had visited three or four parking lots, all full.

Desperate, they drove slowly around a parking lot for a little over 10 minutes hoping someone would leave so they could stop.

No one did, so they drove off, before they managed to find a spot in another parking lot.

But to their surprise, when they returned home from their trip, they got a £ 60 ticket from the operator of the car park they had driven into.

Sutcliffe said: “When we got back from our vacation I opened a letter saying we were fined £ 60 for parking for 13 minutes without paying. That was the time we had spent driving.

“I appealed saying that at no time did we stop, let alone turn off our engine.

“Our appeal was refused. To say I’m disgusted is an understatement.”

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The ticket was handed over to the family’s Ford Fiesta (stock image)
(

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The family paid the fine because it seemed like the easier option than fighting the ticket.

“I thought I would pay it because I didn’t want to worry about going any further,” Sutcliffe said. “It’s a big company and we are a family.”

The Mirror asked Smart Parking if they would refund the £ 60 because the family had not parked.

But Smart Parking said the fine was deserved and there would be no refund.

A spokesperson for Smart Parking said: “Smart Parking is proud to be a member of the British Parking Association and strictly follows its guidelines.

“At Newquay parking lot, we use a state-of-the-art ANPR parking management system to ensure that real customers can always find a place to park.

“It is important to remember that the parking lot is private land. Therefore, when deciding to park, motorists should always check the conditions of use which are clearly outlined in numerous signs on the site.

“In the case of [Sutcliffe] she stood in the parking lot for over 12 minutes without paying, so she correctly received a charge, which she has now paid for.

Last week, The Mirror reported that a man was fined for the time he spent finding parking and waiting in line to buy a ticket.

Paul Adams, 55, says he paid an £ 8.50 ticket to St. Ives which would have kept him parked all day.

But some time later he was fined £ 60 from Armtrac Security Services Ltd, which operates the car park.

As Adams read the notice he was shocked to find he was charged for the 15 minutes he waited to find a seat and the 10 minutes he waited in a queue to buy a ticket at the machine.

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Grants for village-wide improvements in Minoa – Eagle News Online

Two weeks to the day after learning that more than half a million dollars in public and private investments would go towards revitalizing Minoa, Mayor Bill Brazill was briefed by the Onondaga County Community Development Office that, come to think of it, the grand total would end up being closer to a full million.

Not wanting other fundraising candidates to feel left out, County Manager Ryan McMahon and his company calculated the numbers and pulled an additional $ 359,460 out of the US bailout to award five more business ventures in the village.

As announced at the late morning press conference at the Trappers II Pizza Pub on October 26, more than $ 600,000 has already been spent on revitalizing the village’s main street and a handful of businesses bordering the trade corridor.

“I’m not the type to lose words, but the joy and happiness I feel today is overwhelming,” Brazill said on the podium that day, adding that he has been smiling non-stop since he had heard the news over the phone the previous Friday. “This village has a bullet in its arm now.”

In 2019, as part of the first phase of Onondaga County’s Main Street initiative, the villages of Fayetteville and Manlius received $ 275,000 and $ 298,000, respectively, to complete various described improvements. Meanwhile, Minoa was at a different starting point, having received $ 30,000 to develop a set of technical specifications.

“I told Mayor Brazill that if you come up with a plan and get the job done, we’ll come back, and he did,” McMahon said. “Overall, this village is going to be profoundly different.”

Involving the use of over $ 22,000, a component of the overall effort is on the municipal side, which includes the introduction of a village clock and ornamental lampposts in the main street of Minoa, the conversion of the sign for village announcements from manual to digital; and addition of pavilions, lighting and barbecue stations in Lewis Park.

The second part of the initiative concerns the improvement of certain businesses with the use of funds provided by the American bailout plan.

Over $ 200,000 will be invested in brand new windows, doors, patios, landscaping and front fencing for Trappers II, the restaurant located at 101 N. Main St.

With $ 132,000 in total, Trappers II owner Jen Wood and her business partner Greg Rinaldi will be focusing on the future construction of the yet to be named tavern where The 19th Hole is currently located. , thus transforming a “horror” into an “asset,” as McMahon put it.

In addition, the recently opened Spill the Tea Café and Infusion Yoga will have approximately $ 207,000 invested in its property at 208 N. Main Street to account for new masonry, a stamped concrete patio, new windows and replacement. of the roof.

Across the tracks, Charlie’s Tavern, Minoa’s oldest active business, will undergo a roughly $ 88,000 renovation that will include renovating a sign, repairing walls, building a patio. , new windows and other facade renovations.

“Coming back from COVID, it’s been slow to dig the hole we’ve all been in, so that means a lot,” Charlie’s owner Nicole Stoffel said. “I couldn’t have afforded all of this work without this grant. “

The extra grant money added in early November will go to Pave the Way Daycare, Scotty’s Automotive, Tim McIntosh’s property at 112 Willard St., instead of CNY President David Muraco around the corner. Hulbert and Costello Parkway, and Muraco’s other property on Main Street next to Minoa Elementary.

The Muraco-owned plaza across from Lewis Park contains Happy Wok Chinese Restaurant, Sunshine Minoa Food Mart, Parkway Liquors, and Kindred Souls Vintage Lovelies.

McIntosh’s property, which was once a library, would be redeveloped and turned into space for different offices, while Muraco’s property on Main Street would likely be turned into an esplanade with four stores. Its current place and the other selected businesses will see their facades refreshed alongside other structural work.

Three-quarters of the total of $ 916,272 will be borne by the county, with the remainder paid by the village of Minoa and the assisted business owners.

Although he does not hesitate to call the current Minoa the “shining light” in the northern part of the town of Manlius, Brazill said the projects would add “dynamism” to the village while helping to build the county of Manlius. low up along the way.

Complementing the 5km races, car shows and park concerts that have taken place in the village over the years, Brazill said this initiative is also the next step that will make Minoa a more important destination for people. residents of Onondaga County.


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Mozambique: investigate shooting of villagers by park rangers and police – new research

  • Six people shot dead near Banhine National Park on November 3, 2020
  • More than a year later, still no responsibility

Mozambican authorities must thoroughly investigate a shooting last year by park rangers and police that left six people injured, Amnesty International said today.

Interviewees told Amnesty International that rangers and police opened fire on unarmed local residents on a road near Banhine National Park on November 3, 2020. Residents gathered to protest peacefully against the fire. arrest of at least 20 people in an operation to stop charcoal production in the region. .

Over a year later, no one has been held responsible and there has been no proper investigation into this senseless shooting

Muleya Mwananyanda

“Over a year later, no one has been held responsible and there has been no proper investigation into this senseless shooting. The victims and their families are still awaiting an explanation and justice, ”said Muleya Mwananyanda, Amnesty International’s deputy regional director for southern Africa.

“The investigation into this shooting by park wardens and police must be thorough, impartial, transparent and efficient. The Mozambican authorities must prevent the illegal use of force in the future.

Banhine National Park is co-managed by the international conservation organization Peace Parks Foundation (PPF) and the Mozambique National Administration for Conservation Areas (Administração Nacional de reas de Conservação – ANAC).

In a statement to Amnesty International, the PPF said that “all security activities are determined and carried out by the Chief Ranger of Banhine National Parks” (an ANAC employee), together with the head of the national parks. PPF law enforcement operations.

Filming near Banhine National Park

On November 3, 2020, park rangers, with the support of the Special Intervention Unit of the police in nearby Xai Xai Town, carried out an operation against what they claimed was illegal charcoal production. in or near Banhine National Park in Gaza province. The Gerez community area – formed by two villages, Hochane and Madliwa – is located near Banhine National Park.

During the operation, park rangers and police burned charcoal ovens and arrested more than 20 people. Interviewees told Amnesty International that when local villagers heard about the operation, they decided to speak to the rangers immediately.

To stop the park wardens and police vehicles, the villagers blocked the road just outside the park with large logs. Eight people interviewed told Amnesty International that the population was unarmed. The villagers also said that as they had already gathered at a bus stop heading out of town to meet with the governor on an unrelated matter, they did not have weapons with them.

Interviewees said that when forest rangers and police stopped their vehicles, four men from the community walked towards them with empty hands raised. They said forest rangers and police suddenly opened fire, hitting six men.

“No one was carrying a machete, pistol, ax, knife or stick,” said a witness. “The representatives raised their hands as soon as they saw the park rangers to show that they wanted to have a peaceful conversation. But the rangers didn’t want to hear anything – they started shooting.

The rangers didn’t want to hear anything – they started shooting

Witness

In correspondence with Amnesty International, the PPF claimed that the park rangers “fired warning shots in the air, which in no way posed a threat to anyone”.

However, an individual involved in the management of the park, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that “several rangers fired in the air in order to disperse the people as there was a crowd, but some wanted to shoot. individuals “. Several interviewees identified a specific ranger as the one who started shooting and prompted other rangers to shoot.

Three residents were seriously injured, including a man with a serious gunshot wound to the abdomen. Amnesty International checked photos of the injuries and reviewed medical reports from the time indicating that the victims were shot.

As local residents fled, police and forest rangers removed the log and left the area. A local villager drove the six injured in his car to a local health center. Later, an ambulance took the three most seriously injured to Chokwe hospital, about 170 km away.

Three interviewees, including one of those arrested, said all those arrested in the operation to stop charcoal production were released without charge the next day.

Villagers are frustrated that the official investigation into the incident has not progressed beyond the preliminary stage, despite meeting with the National Criminal Investigation Service and the Attorney General’s office at least four times since November 30. 2020.

Amnesty International considers that, as the villagers posed no imminent threat of death or serious injury to convoy members, the use of force by rangers and police was neither necessary nor proportionate, and therefore illegal in the process. under international human rights law.

Response from the Peace Parks Foundation

In correspondence with Amnesty International, the PPF called the incident “regrettable” and claimed that the convoy had been “ambushed” by a large group of people “armed with sticks, stones and machetes”. The PPF confirmed the presence of its law enforcement operations manager during the incident, saying he remained in the car when community members started throwing stones.

PPF stated that “[t]To our knowledge, none of the Banhine rangers used unnecessary force. We understand that three BNP rangers in support vehicles located at a distance from the special police vehicle fired warning shots in the air, which in no way posed a threat to anyone, and which was judged proportional to the threat posed ”.

The PPF also stated that “The Peace Parks Foundation immediately investigated the event using information provided by senior park staff and the Peace Parks Foundation technical advisor and, through this process, was informed that, as it had happened outside of the Peace Parks Foundation conservation area and support area… this would be investigated and monitored by responsible government structures ”.

Since at least 2018, the private South African military company Dyck Advisory Group (DAG) has provided anti-poaching services, ranger training and other specialist security support to the PPF, notably under the name from Environmental Management and Conservation Trust (EMCT).

In a 2020 project report viewed by Amnesty International, PPF noted that “The Environmental Management and Conservation Trust (formerly the Dyck Advisory Group) and the Peace Parks Foundation are stepping up their efforts to tackle escalation and destructive crime against wildlife in and around Key Mozambique Protected. Zones ”, including in Banhine National Park. In a statement, PPF said that DAG / EMCT had no involvement in Banhine before or at the time of the incident, and that they ended their relationship with DAG / EMCT in May 2021.

Park boundaries change confusion

In 2013, the Mozambican government changed the boundaries of Banhine National Park, increasing its area from 5,600 to 7,250 square kilometers. The expansion involved the area around the village of Hochane and established a five-kilometer buffer zone around the new park boundaries. Based on an analysis of satellite images, Amnesty International estimates that the 2013 boundary and buffer zone changes reduced the area of ​​the Hochane community by more than 50%.

Amnesty International found that the new park boundaries included an area that local communities have used for decades to produce charcoal. Interviewees told Amnesty International that the authorities had not informed or consulted them about the changes to the park boundaries.

Villagers have underlying grievances which should be addressed through consultation and negotiation, not bullets

Richard pearshouse

Amnesty International considers that some members of the local communities had a legitimate expectation of being able to produce charcoal in the area. Several community members denied that the charcoal production areas were inside the park. Members of the local community shared with Amnesty International recent licenses for charcoal production in the area, including one for Hochane which was valid at the time of the shooting.

“Villagers have underlying grievances which should be addressed through consultation and negotiation, not bullets,” said Richard Pearshouse, Crisis and Environment Officer at Amnesty International.

“The Peace Parks Foundation must ensure that its operations respect the rights of local communities and comply with international standards. “

Methodology

Amnesty International interviewed 26 people, including victims and witnesses of the shooting, community and government representatives, and people involved in the management of the park. He also reviewed official documents released by the Mozambican government and other organizations, reports from hospitals and local media, and academic articles.

In October and November 2021, Amnesty International wrote to PPF, ANAC, Gaza Province Police Command and DAG / EMCT for further information. PPF’s responses are available here and here. None of the other entities had responded at the time of publication.


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World-class Dursey Island cable car and visitor center green light

An Bord Pleanala has given the green light for a new cable car and visitor center to serve Dursey Island off the Beara Peninsula, west of Cork.

In granting permission for the Cork County Council project, An Bord Pleanala rescinded its own inspector’s strong recommendation to deny the building permit.

Currently, the existing cable car system serving Dursey Island – built in 1969 and modernized since – attracts just over 20,400 visitors a year to Dursey and Cork County Council has proposed an annual cap of almost five times that of 100,000 visitors in the new cable car system.

However, the granting of the authorization by An Bord Pleanala set a cap of 5,000 visitors per month during busy tourist months to address the concerns of its own inspector. The Council’s program also includes a welcome center for visitors from the mainland which will include an interpretation center, an 84-seat café and a 100-space car park at Ballaghboy on the Beara Peninsula.

The new cable car is to be 375 meters in length and the existing cable car and accompanying infrastructure must be taken out of service.

Failte Ireland told the Appeal Board that completing the proposed development would offer visitors “a world-class experience of Dursey Island”.

An Bord Pleanala gave the green light to the project despite the recommendation of its inspector in the case, Patricia Calleary, to refuse the planning permit. Senior Planning Inspector Calleary concluded that the proposed development principle to replace the existing cable car serving Dursey Island is acceptable.

However, Ms. Calleary felt that “the scale of development is excessive and, as proposed, would allow a significant increase in the number of visitors, risking unsustainable impacts on the highly sensitive ecological environment”.

Ms Calleary concluded that “the development would not be compatible with the environmental sensitivities and nature conservation designations of the region, particularly Dursey Island”. Ms Calleary said the number of visitors that would be allowed by the development “would be excessive”.

As part of the conditions attached to the authorization, the appeal commission clarified that the existing cable car (photo) must be kept at a location on the site in order to preserve the cultural heritage assets on site. Photo: Dan Linehan

She said that “overall the development is not justified in terms of planning and would result in an unsustainable form of tourism which is not appropriate to the unique circumstances of Dursey Island”.

However, the council said the cap of 5,000 visitors per month taken with the significant mitigation measures proposed to protect biodiversity near the cable car and on the island would address the inspector’s concerns.

The council said it also noted that the proposed visitor management plan to control and manage the volume of visitors to the site will ensure that parking lots can meet visitor demand. He also said that this, along with the reduced maximum number of visitors allowed to the island during the peak summer season, would “maintain sustainable tourism levels at the site.”

The board concluded that the proposed development would facilitate safer and improved travel experiences for residents and visitors to the island. The council also found that the project would not have significant negative effects on the environment or the nearby community and would not be detrimental to the visual or landscape amenities of the area.

The town planning application was first filed with An Bord Pleanala more than two years ago, in September 2019.

Each of the two cable cars in the new cable car system would have a capacity of 15 people and the trip to the island would take between five and six minutes for visitors to enjoy the recreational experience and views of Dursey Sound. In its communication on the scheme, An Taisce argued that no justification had been provided for the significant increase in passenger capacity.

An Taisce also said the program would exacerbate unsustainable car tourism in West Cork.

As part of the conditions attached to the authorization, the appeal commission clarified that the existing cable car must be kept at a location on the site in order to preserve the cultural heritage assets on the site. The original cable car was erected in 1969 and was modernized in 1981 and 2004.


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Car park management

Offer to bring a parking fee to the Roman Fort at Burgh Castle

Posted:
07:00 on November 21, 2021



Budget pressures are forcing custodians of some of Norfolk’s most valuable heritage assets to introduce parking fees at its sites.

Norfolk Archaeological Trust (NAT) operates several sites across the county, including burial mounds, forts and monasteries, which are free to enter.

The charity says its small membership and changes to its funding method have resulted in declining revenues.


Views from the new promenade which has been installed at the Roman fort at Bugh Castle Photo: Nick Butcher
– Credit: Nick Butcher

To make up for the deficit and enable it to maintain its sites and keep them open to the public, it proposes to charge for parking.

The first of its sites offering to introduce fees is Burgh Castle Roman Fort, which is popular with dog walkers many of whom roam its trails daily.

Documents submitted to Great Yarmouth Borough Council in support of the offer indicate that the income is essential to pay for upkeep and maintenance.


Burgh Castle is an easy one-mile circular walk where you can explore the surrounding area Photo: Nick

Burgh Castle is an easy one-mile circular walk where you can explore the surrounding area Photo: Nick Butcher
– Credit: Nick Butcher

He also wants to install a license plate recognition camera to deter fly tippers and reduce criminal damage.

The trust said it had engaged with the public and listened to comments.

As a result, the likely charges would be £ 1.50 for two hours, £ 2 for four and £ 4 all day.

Brian Swann, chairman of Belton with Burgh Castle Parish Council, said he understood the trust’s position but had concerns about the safety of people parking on the narrow Butt Lane to avoid to pay.

The clash of cars and people with dogs had the potential to cause a serious accident, he said.

NAT Director Natalie Butler said in a statement, “We believe that the introduction of better parking management at the Fort site will also bring benefits to the local community.

“The past few months have seen tough challenges at the Burgh Castle fort site, with antisocial behavior, criminal damage, escalating fly spills and litter, and visitor cars occupying the parking lot long after it should have been officially. We believe our plans for the management of the Fort parking lot will reduce these problems and provide a safer site for the locals.

People have up to December 7 to have their say.

Tell the story of Norfolk

The other NAT sites are:


The lime rich Roman walls that survive at Venta Icenorum at Caistor St Edmund near Norwich were of

The lime-rich Roman walls that survive at Venta Icenorum at Caistor St Edmund near Norwich have been designated as nature reserves.
– Credit: Eastern Counties Newspapers

Roman city of Caistor – once the largest Roman city in East Anglia

Abbey of St Benet – an atmospheric ruin on the Norfolk Broads near Ludham

Burnham Norton Monastery – a 14th century caretaker’s house

Bloodgates Hill Fort – a fort from the Iron Age described as “enigmatic”

Fiddler’s Hill Barrow – a prehistoric tumulus


Buttercups color the grass of Binham Priory.  Photo: DENISE BRADLEY

Buttercups color the grass of Binham Priory. Photo: DENISE BRADLEY
– Credit: DENISE BRADLEY / Archant2021

Binham Priory – one of the most beautiful monastic sites in Norfolk

Filby Chapel – the site of the unitary church and the 18th century funerary slabs

Mount Middleton – the remains of a small castle of motte and bailey

Tasburgh Precinct – a “mysterious” site and the least known of the monuments of the trust.

To learn more about the Norfolk Archaeological Trust or to make a donation, visit the website at www.norfarchtrust.org.uk.


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Car park management

Mom collapses in parking lot due to allergic reaction despite warning from restaurant staff

Amy Taylor and her family visited the Haute Dolci restaurant at Coliseum Shopping Park in Ellesmere Port on September 11 last year, when the traumatic incident occurred.

Amy had a severe allergic reaction after eating the meal she ordered, which she was told was nut free

A woman had an allergic reaction and collapsed in a restaurant parking lot after eating a meal with her family, after warning staff of her allergy when ordering.

Amy Taylor and her family visited the Haute Dolci restaurant at Coliseum Shopping Park in Ellesmere Port on September 11 of last year.

Having been diagnosed with a nut allergy earlier in the year, Amy made it clear to the waitress that she had a nut allergy.

Chester Magistrates’ Court heard that the mother asked if the food she wanted to order contained nuts or was made from nuts. The waitress said the food was nut free.

After starting to eat the food, Amy suffered from a severe allergic reaction with a tight chest and breathing problems.

After the family left the restaurant, they collapsed on the way back to their car.

The incident was reported to the Council and an investigation was initiated, according to the Echo of Liverpool.




At Chester Magistrates’ Court, owners of Haute Dolci, HD Coliseum Ltd, pleaded guilty to breaking the food safety law after lawsuits were brought by Cheshire West and Chester Council.

HD Coliseum Ltd was fined £ 2,000, plus £ 945 in court costs and a victim fine surcharge of £ 190.

In addition, a total compensation of £ 500 must be paid by the company to Amy Taylor within 28 days, bringing the total amount the company must pay to £ 3,635.

The company confirmed that the waitress had received a formal written warning and that all staff had been retrained. All allergen issues should now be reported immediately to management.

Advisor Karen Shore, Deputy Head of Council and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transportation, said: “This business was putting its customers at risk and it was extremely fortunate that Amy did not suffer. more serious consequences. “

“All food businesses have a duty to serve safe food and if that fails, this is totally unacceptable and the Council has a duty to protect the health of the general public.




“In this case, officers discovered that the company had failed to meet the required allergen standards and posed a significant risk to the public.”

“Food companies that do not follow the regulations and put the general public at risk will not be tolerated. Fortunately, the majority of businesses operating in Cheshire West and Chester operate at a high level of compliance. “

“Officers on our Regulatory Services team work proactively to help business owners comply with laws and meet food hygiene and safety standards. “


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