Two Tree Island Arson Attack Update

February 4, 2020 by Emily Mertens

Essex Wildlife Trust have renewed their statement on last Summer’s spate of arson at Two Tree Island.

EWT issued a statement on their website stating:

We are aware that the current situation at two tree island, with regards to the nature watching hides, is far from ideal and we are doing all we can to rectify the situation. 

Unfortunately, there was a spate of vandalism in the summer where both hides were targeted resulting in complete demolition and removal of both structures overlooking the lagoon and Benfleet creek. 

this was challenging at the time but has given us an opportunity to review the design of the structures with a view to provide even better hides for our visitors to watch wildlife.

We are currently going through the planning and fundraising processes to get us to the point where we can replace the hides with more robust, welcoming wildlife watching structures. 

We are not giving specific completion date as yet, but when we are closer to installing new hides we will put a notification on the website.

The nature reserve, which is adjacent to the internationally protected Thames Estuary, serves as a Winter refuel for a huge variety of Winter wildfowl and waders, and the hides proved popular with birdwatchers and visitors alike.

The vandalism occurred in May of last year, when a local photographer saw smoke rising from the bushes and alerted the emergency services. The wooden bird hides were soon engulfed in flames and had to be demolished, in an event which emergency services had determined as a deliberate attack.

As the hides are two of just a handful in the area, this comes as a massive blow to the wildlife of the Thames Estuary and surrounding areas.

If you would like to support the trust, you can visit their website here.


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