Helping hedgehogs in England

This video from England says about itself:

24 November 2015

LB Loxley takes a look behind the scenes at the busy Prickles Hedgehog Rescue. Looking at the work involved, the problems facing hedgehogs and what we can do to help. WARNING – Guaranteed Aahh factor.

British young Muslim women defended against racist

Ruhi Rehman

From the Daily Mirror in Britain:

Young Muslim woman targeted by racist thug on train thanks her ‘Geordie angels’

23:01, 23 Nov 2015
Updated 23:02, 23 Nov 2015

By Craig Thompson

Ruhi Rehman, 23, was petrified when the yob told her to “get off” the train – and told other passengers she could have a bomb

A young Muslim woman who suffered racist abuse from a train thug has thanked the heroes who stepped in to help.

Ruhi Rehman, 23, was petrified when the yob told her to “get off” the train – and told other passengers she could have a bomb.

But other travellers were disgusted to see Ruhi and her sister subjected to the foul tirade and rushed to their rescue.

They demanded he leave the pair alone and forced him off Newcastle’s Metro – clapping and cheering as he left in shame.

Ruhi told the Newcastle Chronicle : “It was the true Geordie spirit that shone through.

Read more: Hero commuter defends crying young Muslim woman from thug’s ‘terrorist’ racist rant after Paris attacks

“They were my angels that day and I can’t thank them enough.”

Ruhi and her sister had been travelling between Newcastle and Whitely Bay when they were approached by the man on the busy train.

“He shouted “get up out of that seat” at me,” said Ruhi.

“I was shocked at first because I didn’t really know what was happening.

“He was then saying stuff like ‘this is my country’ and my sister told him we were born here and it was our country too.

“It was then the other passengers started getting involved, telling him to leave us alone.

“Then he said to them ‘what, do you want her to bomb this train?’.”

Disgusted by his comments, a group of men demanded the man leave the Metro at the next station, telling him he was not welcome.

Ruhi said: “There was no violence or anything, they just made it clear he had to leave.”

When the man got off the train the carriage erupted into applause.

“I’d never seen anything like it,” said Ruhi. “I have never felt more proud of being a Geordie.

“It was lovely that everyone came together to help us and I can’t thank them all enough.

“It made me feel really optimistic and hopeful.”

Ruhi has now reported the attack to police.

She added: “After what happened in Paris I have felt a bit paranoid.

“But why should we? Just because of a few extremist people.”

Katrina Barber, 41, was sitting opposite Ruhi, who was wearing a burka, on the Metro.

She said: “They were a lovely couple of girls.

“We were talking about the weather being cold before this man came up and started shouting at them for no reason.

“He was quite intimidating and was screaming in a really violent way.

“A lady and her daughter moved out of the way because they were so scared.

“But other people just jumped to her defence and, in the end, everyone came together and made it clear we would not stand for this type of behaviour.

“I was so moved by what happened, I gave the girls a hug as I got off.”

Police today said they were investigating the incident which happened last Saturday.

Ruhi’s story has also had a strong reaction on social media from people praising the actions of the passengers.

Sharon Kelly, managing director at DB Regio Tyne and Wear, which operates the Metro, said: “We urge anyone with information about this incident to contact the police.

Read more: Woman launches into vile racist rant on bus telling black man ‘you’re inferior’

“The safety of our passengers is paramount. I can assure customers that incidents of this nature are rare on Metro and they will not be tolerated.

“A police investigation into this matter is now underway and we will work with them to help trace those responsible.”

Metro Inspector Ian King said: “We have received a report of an alleged racist incident happening on a Metro train at around 4:45pm on Saturday, November 21.

Northumbria Police take a hard stance against any form of attack on any minority group or individual and officers will be investigating this report.

“Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101 ext 69191 quoting reference number 191 23/11/15.”

See also here.

Thugs chant ‘ISIS go home’ as they beat Scottish takeaway owner hours after Paris terror attacks: here.

Australian state-funded networks provide platform for extreme right: here.

Anti-Muslim rallies in Australia: A byproduct of the “war on terror”: here.

Nazi bombing of Coventry, England, 1940

This video from England is called Blitz – The Bombing of Coventry – November 1940.

By Peter Frost in Britain:

The night Coventry all but died

Saturday 14th November 2015

PETER FROST tells the story of his mother and father-in-law’s part in wartime history

MY wife Ann’s mum and dad lived in Paddington nearly all their lives. But for a few years in the war they lived in Derbyshire.

How they got there is a story worth telling, particularly this week, exactly 75 years after what turned out to be a fateful journey.

Ann’s dad Fred volunteered for the RAF, but it turned out he was in a reserved occupation. He worked for precision engineers Collaro, cycling every day the seven miles to its Peckham factory.

Pre-war Collaro’s main product range was top-quality wind-up gramophones. When war came, production moved over to gyroscopic gun and bomb sights.

As the blitz on London got heavier and the Luftwaffe got more accurate, the decision was made to move the factory to Langley Mill in Derbyshire.

This East Midlands factory of Vic Hallam Ltd had once made chicken coops and sheds. The firm had even built the Derbyshire Miners’ Camp at Skegness. But now it would share its huge canalside site and premises with Collaro.

So in the second week of November 1940, Fred and his fellow workers loaded lathes, drills and all the other precision machinery into a convoy of guarded army trucks to make the 150-mile journey north.

Fred and Gladys, with most of their worldly possessions packed in a couple of cardboard suitcases and a tea chest, rode in the back of the truck alongside the precious machinery.

Dressed in dark boiler suits and knitted balaclava helmets, the couple had been pledged to secrecy. The convoy was to travel under the cover of darkness.

Today you would allow perhaps three hours for such a journey. In those pre-motorway days they imagined it might take all night.

Their route, with many wartime diversions, took them through many towns and cities — St Albans, Aylesbury, Rugby and then on to Coventry.

As they approached the cathedral city of Lady Godiva, so did the first wave of 515 German Luftwaffe bombers.

First came 13 specially modified Heinkel He 111 aircraft equipped with top-secret navigational devices. They dropped their bright flaming marker flares at precisely 7.20pm.

Then for the rest of the night came waves of bombers dropping high-explosive devices, blocking roads, smashing water and gas mains and cutting electricity supplies.

The next wave of German bombers rained down a deadly mix of high-explosive and incendiary bombs.

The high-explosive bombs ripped open the roofs of Coventry while petrol and magnesium incendiaries set light to the building interiors. Firestorms raged on every side.

In the middle of this confusion, death and destruction, Gladys and Fred sat in the back of their lorry, painfully and terrifyingly slowly weaving its way through the wreckage and devastation.

Coventry was ablaze. Fire tenders, hoses and emergency medical teams blocked most routes.

As the night’s journey seemed to go on forever, Gladys and Fred speculated on just how safe their new home would be compared with London.

It would take many, many more hours to finally reach their destination in Derbyshire.

The Coventry Blitz has become part of history, and not just in Ann’s family. Eleven hours of relentless bombing began in early evening of November 14 1940.

Three-quarters of the city centre was destroyed and 550 people killed. The medieval city’s cathedral was destroyed.

One important question has never really been answered. Did Winston Churchill have prior warning of the German attack on Coventry?

A number of historians have claimed that Churchill knew that the city was to be targeted by the German Luftwaffe, but chose to do nothing because it would have alerted Adolf Hitler to the fact the Bletchley Park boffins had recently cracked the nazis’ top-secret Enigma codes.

So were the people of Coventry, not to mention Ann’s parents, sacrificed or put at risk “for the greater good,” as Churchill put it?

What is the evidence that Churchill knew all about the German mission they called Operation Moonlight Sonata?

Secret intelligence service chief Group-Captain Frederick Winterbotham, in his book The Ultra Secret, tells how he passed intelligence on to Churchill that Coventry would be the target of the bombing raid a few hours before it took place.

We know that Churchill’s private secretary John Martin subsequently recorded that Churchill received a red box containing details of the raid shortly after three in the afternoon.

Gladys and Fred spent the rest of their war in the Langley Mill factory. Gladys joined hundreds of women checking gun sights. As well as being a factory foreman, Fred served in the local Defence Volunteers — the Home Guard.

When peace finally came they returned to Paddington to start a family.

Ann remembers, as a teenager, her parents taking her on a coach trip to visit Coventry when its new cathedral was dedicated in the early 1960s.

The terrible destruction, still all too apparent as they toured the city, confirmed Gladys and Fred’s lifelong hatred of war and started a lasting commitment to the peace movement in their daughter Ann.

Today Coventry and its cathedral have become a beacon and a centre of hope for the world peace movement.

It proves that even a horrific act of war like the blitz on this proud Midlands city can act as a catalyst in the ongoing struggle for world peace.

17-year-old little tern seen in Gambia

English little tern and other terns in Kartong, Gambia

Kayn Forbes, birdwatcher from Norfolk, England, reports today on Twitter:

17 year-old Little Tern originally ringed in Great Yarmouth in 1998 seen in Kartong, The Gambia

On the photo, the little tern is in front. Behind it, larger Sandwich terns. Behind the Sandwich terns, still larger royal terns with their yellow bills. Finally, closest to the sea the biggest species: Caspian terns.

I fondly remember Kartong Bird Observatory, and terns on the beach in Gambia. However, I did not see little terns then; let alone such an individual, rather old for this species.

French government, improve Calais refugee camp, judge orders

This video says about itself:

Calais Refugee Solidarity | Maya Konforti | 20.09.15

A Stand Up to Racism Birmingham delegation, supported by the Amirah Foundation, head out from England to France to assist and take supplies to refugees living in the Calais camp known as ‘The Jungle’.

Charity worker Maya Konforti of Auberge des Migrants International discusses the situation in the refugee camp in Calais, and explains the needs of the refugees and migrants there. Sunday 20th September, 2015.

Filmed and edited by Adam Yosef.

Interview by Geoff Dexter and Maz Saleem.

From France 24:

French court orders state improve Calais migrant camp conditions

A French court on Monday ordered the state to improve conditions at the giant “New Jungle” migrant camp in Calais after NGOs called for immediate action over “serious human rights violations”.

The court in Lille in northern France ordered the department of Pas-de-Calais and the town of Calais to install 10 more water stations – with five taps each, 50 latrines and “one or several” more access points to emergency services at the overflowing migrant site where some 6,000 people are now camped out in the cold.

Doctors of the World and Catholic Relief Services, as well as other NGOs, appealed to the court to “end serious human rights violations” of the migrants living in the camp where the number of inhabitants has nearly doubled since the end of September.

The so-called “New Jungle” camp, which is around an hour away on foot from the centre of the northern French city, has swelled in size over recent months as more and more migrants arrive, wanting to cross over to Britain.

Along with the new sanitation stations, the administrative court ordered the installation of garbage collection sites and general cleaning of the camp, with eight days to implement the new measures and a 100 euro ($110) fine for each day of delay.

The Pas-de-Calais prefecture must also begin in the next 48 hours to identify unaccompanied minors in distress and to begin the process of their placement.

The prefecture said in a statement that it will implement the measures in the time alloted.

Patrice Spinosi, the lawyer for the NGOs, told AFP that it was “a first victory”, but that there was still a lot of work to be done in the camp.

Some of the other requests by the NGOs, like using vacant houses to shelter migrants and upping the meal distribution to twice a day for all 6,000 people versus 2,500 meals once a day, were not approved by the court.

The Doctors of the World director for France, Jean-Francois Corty, called the decision “exceptional” because the court ordered the state to take emergency measures.

British street artist Banksy’s dystopian theme park Dismaland was being dismantled Monday before being shipped to a migrant camp near Calais to make shelters, organisers said: here.

Refugee crisis: Ex-soldier faces jail for trying to smuggle four-year-old Afghan girl out of Calais Jungle. Rob Lawrie faces a charge of aiding illegal immigration in France for what he calls a ‘crime of compassion’: here.