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EditorialsUpFront 10/22

UpFront 10/22

With all the chaos in Westminster, we could be forgiven for being distracted from the challenges of day-to-day life, but that’s not an option. The ups and downs of our own small lives go on and we have to deal with personal trials regardless of government absurdity. Sadly, this month we said goodbye to Cecil Amor who passed away at the end of September. Cecil first began his column for this magazine in 2007 and his local history and at times autobiographical articles were very popular. He will be sadly missed. We will be publishing a tribute to Cecil in our next issue. I imagine he might have enjoyed many of the items on this month’s pages, particularly our interview with Lord David Owen, a fellow historian. Lord Owen’s book Riddle, Mystery, and Enigma: Two Hundred Years of British-Russian Relations delves into the history of British relations with Russia and the Soviet Union in the past 200 years. Reading it last week, I couldn’t help thinking how difficult it is becoming for other countries to see modern-day Britain as a force for change or stability in today’s world. With a government in disarray and no guarantee of a steady hand on the horizon, it seems hard to imagine Britain as a power on the world stage for some time. Hopefully, that will change. Also in this issue, Dr. Sam Rose, former CEO of the Jurassic Coast Trust tries to bring some clarity to the question of rewilding. As with many new initiatives, interpretation of the definition of a word can distract from the goal of the project. Words can be construed in more ways than one. Most of us can remember when Donald Trump’s press secretary, Kellyanne Conway, once said whilst answering questions about the turnout for his inauguration, that some people use ‘alternative facts’. There is no such thing, she was told, there are facts and there are falsehoods. But to be fair to those who enjoy dissecting nitty gritty, there are also grey areas. Which is why it’s always useful to have insight from those on the ground. As Dr. Rose says in his article, rewilding is here to stay and ‘the fundamental principle underlying it is that of allowing natural processes to act to help biodiversity recover’. Rewilding is not, as one local wit suggested to me this week’ ‘another word for reinventing the same government’.

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