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The Voice - March 2021

Comment by Geoff

Geoff Juden

When the leader of a local authority states that a nature reserve can no longer be considered for an SSI status because the biodiversity has been cleared, we should all be very concerned. Of course, we need accommodation for Londoners but not at the price of nature since that is essential to life.

Protected species are known to have been resident at The Limehouse Nature Reserve/Triangle. Although Tower Hamlets may get away with most of its destruction of The Limehouse Nature Reserve, criminal activity did take place because of the Council’s actions.

This is a crime against nature since the removal of bat roosts is against the law. It is yet to be established as to whether further infringements were also made with regard to the biodiversity clear-out from this protected site.

If you value having someone campaign on your behalf to protect the environment and having access to useful articles about gardening and local environmental matters, please make a donation to help us with the cost of maintaining The East London Garden Society.

Pesticides that Kill Bees

Bee in hand

This is a honeybee. The pollen on her legs is from dandelions. Her tongue is sticking out because a pesticide on the dandelion killed her.

In Spring, dandelions are the bees' first food. This bee is dead from weed killer spread on what we see as weeds, but what nature sees as food. Please don’t spray weeds until you see the blackberries blooming.

In urban areas, weeds, flowers and fruit trees are the bees' only source of food until the middle of June. There are far more weeds than flowers or fruit trees, so don't take away their food.

If there are no bees, there are no food crops for us, and we all starve.
Richard L Clarke (February 2021)

Bats & The Limehouse Triangle

Limehouse Triangle

In 2016, Mayor Biggs wrote to a resident on The Locksley Estate to say that the Limehouse Triangle could no longer be considered for a local SSI status as the biodiversity had been cleared.

In 2018 an ecology report was completed which recorded the presence of bat activity, but not all trees could be inspected owing to leaf cover. However, no bat survey was warranted. The majority of tree cover has now been felled.

Bearing in mind the legal obligations regarding bats, it has to be asked what further action, if any, was taken?

It is now known that other protected species were seen at The Limehouse Triangle, including Stag Beetles and the sighting of a Slow Worm but no ecological survey was undertaken when the biodiversity was cleared on the site. So, what action was taken to protect the Slow Worm or relocate the Stag Beetles?

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History of Garlic


Garlic (Allium sativum) is a species in the onion genus.

Its close relatives include the onion, shallot, leek, chive, Welsh onion and Chinese onion. 

It is native to Central Asia and north eastern Iran and has long been a common seasoning worldwide, with a history of several thousand years of human consumption and use.

It was known to ancient Egyptians and has been used as both a food flavouring and a traditional medicine. 

China produces 80% of the world's supply of garlic. The word garlic derives from Old English, garlēac, meaning gar (spear) and leek, as a 'spear-shaped leek.

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Protection of Trees and Parks

Tree removal

There is protection for trees (TPO) and protection for grade listed ancient monuments, plus important buildings. These are all a part of our heritage, our history, and our reason for being here.

Work undertaken on historic and ancient buildings is usually restoration but in some circumstances it may be considerably more, in which case the building must keep its original look.

For grade listed parks and trees with protection orders, the requirement is different. They are at the whim of a local authority as to whether they survive or not. The listing is a status in law, not a legal obligation. Therefore, a local authority may grant continued protection or dispense with the listing status at will when it suits them.

For this reason, The East London Garden Society has raised a petition to ask that protected trees and grade listed parks must be afforded the same protection in law as for grade listed buildings.

If you agree, please give your support now by signing the petition.

Cooking in a Different Way ‐ Linguine with a Tomato Sauce


Linguine with tomato sauce


Using a medium sized pan, heat a little oil and gently cook the onion and garlic until soft. If you are using chilli flakes, add now and leave to cook for 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the tomatoes and also use the water you used to rinse out the tin. Season with salt and pepper and leave to simmer for about 30 minutes.

Cook pasta as per instructions but cook for a little shorter time, since when it is drained and added to the pan of sauce, it carries on cooking.

Serve with a generous amount of parmesan and torn basil leaves.

Finally ...

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