Imagine my pleasure, then, when – having cleaned a little bit of the muck off the sign, for it was very dirty – I read the following:
“Shalford water meadows were once lush farmland to grow hay and graze cattle. This was achieved by creating a water meadow system across the fields along the Wey Navigation. Eventually the water meadows fell out of use and nature began to reclaim them for herself.
“If the water meadows continued to be left to nature they would eventually turn to woodland and dry up. This would result in the loss of all the fantastic plants and animals that made the meadows their home. To prevent this happening we are carrying out sensitive management work across the meadows.”
Now, one could criticize this missive for its lack of commas, and for dubbing plants and animals “fantastic” when, in truth, they are real and no fantasy. But this message came across to me most clearly:
See? Humans are good for wildlife, not bad. And it’s “official” – ‘cos Guildford Borough Council sez so!