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  • New Forest "Defence Association" mine a new seam of idiocy
  • Premier Icon manton69
    Full Member

    I know that they do not like cyclists, but they are now having a go at few runners on winter evenings with lights on. They are doing an event from 1700-1830 and they want to stop the “abuse” of the Forest. I think I may just sign up to annoy them 🙂

    BBC new item.

    Premier Icon garage-dweller
    Full Member

    If they are genuinely worried about disturbing animals (the usual and I see current excuse for being unwelcoming to another user group) then maybe they would like to slow down or in fact ban those in motor cars with their horrible headlights from entering the New Forest at night.

    I used to travel through the New Forest late at night in the car a lot. The animals are regularly on the road and never really seemed to give a fig about headlights attached to a tonne of car (having had to negotiate more than a few dawdling cattle/horses in the small hours) so why are they going to care about runners? My experience of night riding in other locations is that other than the odd bird not a lot gets spooked.

    There’s always a risk of animals darting into the road there at night. People should drive accordingly it’s a tangible risk on many of the roads within the cattle grid managed areas.

    Premier Icon zippykona
    Full Member

    Won’t somebody think of the ponies?

    Premier Icon Bez
    Full Member

    I used to ride in the forest at night back in the 90s, when I recall it being acutely noticeable that none of the animals gave the slightest monkeys about lights waving at them. And, as above, they’re fantastically relaxed about scores of lights bearing down on them at 40mph every night. So I’m sceptical about alarmist warnings to the opposite effect, not least when they come from someone who advocates strapping things onto the same animals and sitting on them.

    Turns out I used to go to school with Dr “Don’t Illuminate Them, Sit On Them” Hockley. Small world, eh 🙂

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Full Member

    Then I blame you for bullying him/her insufficiently, Bez

    (or excessively, obvz)

    Premier Icon slowster
    Free Member

    If anything I imagine Dr Tony Hockley’s ridiculous comments will only serve to undermine the credibility of the Commoners Defence Association with the public and other organisations. I suspect that many in the Forestry Commission and the New Forest District Council welcome the CDA making such patently over the top statements for publication in the media, because it shows everyone what a blinkered, narrow minded and selfish special interest group they are.

    In particular, my experience of riding in the Forest in daylight and hours of darkness is that this statement is completely untrue:

    The risk of animals being spooked is higher at night

    The ponies are most likely to be spooked if they are ‘surprised’, i.e. they’ve got their heads down grazing by the roadside and only notice a cyclist, runner etc. when they draw level with the horse. At night, cycle lights and runners’ head torches mean that the horses are aware of their presence from a distance and so are not spooked by them when they get closer.

    they could run across a road or accidentally run into barbed wire.

    This is an even more ridiculous statement. Logically the event would use the gravel tracks in the Forest, which are generally well segregated from the roads by fences and gates. The Forestry Commission fences are not barbed wire (I suspect the only barbed wire in the Forest is around private farmland, which the event is unlikely to go anywhere near).

    For an academic, Dr Tony Hockley seems remarkably incapable of sensible reasoned critical thinking. The more silly statements like this he and the CDA put out, the more people will cease to pay them any regard.

    Premier Icon theboyneeds
    Free Member

    I go out riding in the Forest at night. The horses/cows/donkeys/deer just don’t move as I come down the trail.

    The NF ‘Defence Association’ is probably Dr Hockley and his wife sitting in their triple glazed house of an evening and not venturing out to see what really goes on after dark because of all the hoodies lurking behind every clump of gorse or tree stump.

    Premier Icon Poopscoop
    Full Member

    Commoners Defence Association

    Sounds like like A UKIP backed nationalist terror organisation to me.

    Premier Icon jamj1974
    Full Member

    ommoners Defence Association

    Sounds like like A UKIP backed nationalist terror organisation to me.

    Sounds like a bunch of bellends to me.

    Premier Icon jonnyboi
    Full Member

    Ooh, I’m in

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Full Member

    the run, or the bellend defence association ?

    Premier Icon jonnyboi
    Full Member

    Oh the latter shewerly.

    Premier Icon frogstomp
    Full Member

    Commoners Defence Association meeting, earlier..

    Premier Icon mogrim
    Full Member

    Dr Tony Hockley

    What is he actually a doctor of? If it’s nothing to do with ecology I can’t see why we use the title, seems irrelevant.

    Premier Icon dissonance
    Full Member

    What is he actually a doctor of?

    Public policy analyst, specialising in strategic change. Strong experience of public policy processes in London, Washington and Brussels. Visiting Senior Fellow, Department of Social Policy, LSE

    linked in thingy

    Premier Icon poah
    Free Member

    What is he actually a doctor of? If it’s nothing to do with ecology I can’t see why we use the title, seems irreleva

    Because he earned it.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Free Member

    Because he earned it.

    It’s a not so subtle attempt at argument from authority. Of which, for this subject, he has none.

    Premier Icon poah
    Free Member

    It’s a not so subtle attempt at argument from authority. Of which, for this subject, he has none

    It’s a salutation. I’m Dr Thomson wither Im taking about the model free dynamic analysis of proteins or picking customers shopping up at work.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Free Member

    It’s a salutation.

    Precisely. So you’d use it as often as I use Mr.

    Premier Icon poah
    Free Member

    But it’s also a title. Like sir or reverend etc. It’s polite to use it. But yes I do see your point

    Premier Icon ransos
    Free Member

    But it’s also a title. Like sir or reverend etc. It’s polite to use it. But yes I do see your point

    It can be handy. My brother in law never uses it, except for the time he was being patronised in the job centre.

    Premier Icon ehrob
    Free Member

    I’ve got a PhD and can talk complete crap too, nice one Tony.

    “Animals” includes quite a broad spectrum of things. What’s he on about?

    I do quite a lot of ornithology related jobs and it is true that at estuaries, people in vehicles and plant are less likely to disturb birds compared to a man walking the same path. Birds recognise the shape of people as a threat. But the New Forest, in winter, for an hour and a half, is quite likely a bit different.

    I’d be intrigued to see what his evidence is.

    Premier Icon amedias
    Free Member

    “It’s a dangerous precedent which would be set for cycle events or orienteering at night – a tranquil time for the forest,” he said.

    Tranquil my arse! Night time is when half the occupants of the forest will be out foraging, hunting and generally going about their business.

    Nobody ever worries about disturbing the owls and badgers during the day do they…

    Premier Icon HoratioHufnagel
    Free Member

    Without wanting to provide them with further ammunition, I am ashamed to say I once scared a mouse near Netley Marsh.

    Premier Icon burko73
    Full Member

    Open season on recreation at the moment. Not on the 8nternet yet but check out the September/ October v’s court minutes when they get posted up. Lots of presentments bemoaning recreation. One even from a guy who has opened up his home in the middle of the woods as a pop up cafe, complete with signs attached to the cycle post waymarkers, next to the cycle network moaning about cyclists) Nobody seems to put two and two together.

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