Friday, 6 July 2012

Preston Guild....

....and the breeding Common Terns at Preston Docks. All the photographs in this post are courtesy of Geoff Gradwell....thanks GG.

I have been approached by e-mail about the forthcoming Preston Guild and the consequences of 'possible' disturbance to the breeding Common Terns at Preston Docks, as a consequence I have in turn been in touch with someone else on the subject who asked if I could highlight the subject on Birds2blog.

The Preston Guild dates back to 1179 and is unique in that it is the only guild celebrated in the UK which is held every 20 years. My personal knowledge of this event - and in particular to the details of this years celebration - is limited to what I have just said and any precise details on where and what happens end here. However, what I do know is that I have been made aware that some of the celebrations will involve Preston Docks and this is where the Common Terns come into the picture. 

I think most local birders know that the Common Terns breed in the docks thanks to some excellent voluntary work in putting pontoons into place for the nesting birds.

In order to avoid unnecessary disturbance to these birds and their young I have been asked to highlight the need to contact the organisers of Preston Guild via a website on which we can all pass on our comments about the risk involved here and it has been suggested the comments we make should be on the lines of....

Please may I draw attention to the possibility of disturbance by events around this years Preston Guild at Preston Docks where there are some breeding sea birds using pontoons erected in the dock for the benefit of the birds in order to breed in safety. Could I therefore ask the organisers if they would make this known to visitors here so as to keep any unavoidable disturbance to a minimum. Thank you. 

Thanks for looking in on Birds2blog. I wonder if you would consider making contact and passing the suggested comment via the link to the Preston Guild


Ana Mínguez Corella said...

Hi Pete!!!.. Beautiful images of common terns!!!.. Greetings from Spain.. :-)))

Brian Rafferty said...

Pete. The tern colony at Preston Dock is very important and I have today notified Preston Guild via the link and hope many of my colleagues do so also. Let's hope the terns survive the probable disturbance from the Riversway Festival which takes place Friday 20th - Sunday 22nd July.

Pete Woodruff said...

Thanks Ana....GG will be pleased to see your comment about his images, and good to know you are still looking in on Birds2blog.

Yes Brian....I'd like to think everyone who sees this post will forward the appropriate comments to 'Preston Guild' re this possible disturbance to these important breeders.

geoff gradwell said...


Us Gradwell's were involved in Preston Guild as far back as the 1500's (that's a year not the time!)

The Guilds were worse than the trade unions, you couldn't work in town unless you were in a guild, something of a closed shop, and well policed by the Guilds, you were literally run out of town! – every 20 years they celebrated their restrictive practices (but ensured customers weren't ripped off, sort of) hence the Guild celebrations.

Us Gradwells were also fined for not clearing their middens too, drunk and disorderly, abusing town officials, so not much has changed in 500 years!

They also built a number of churches including St Augustines... and PRESTON DOCKS!


Christian said...

Geoff's done well with those, especially with the 'beak-dipping' one.