Yesterday, 30th November, was Remembrance Day for Lost Species. This is a chance each year to explore the stories of species, cultures, lifeways and habitats driven extinct by unjust exploitation, past and ongoing. It is about taking a moment to mourn, but then afterwards to take action to provide urgent help for those species threatened by extinction. The emphasis yesterday was on pollinators, which are mainly insects (now known to have declined by 75% in numbers in the past 3 decades), but also birds and mammals. In Telegraph Hill, we organised a simple action of a winged bench which people could sit on to become an insect and hold a message. As it started snowing – only a ‘flindrikin’ or light dusting of snow – but it was cold enough to drive us off the bench and into the Hill Station where we set up a winged sofa.
Some bees (Emma Garofolo from Mischief Makers, and Stephanie Patient) also came along to amaze and inform. So many conversations and connections were made. People came from afar (Holland! Muswell Hill!). Everybody that passed by expressed support, and a wish to green the area and make it pollinator-friendly. We agreed to hold an event during the festival to explore ideas further.