News Article

POSITIVE NEWS - What went right this week: Britain’s most remote pub saved, plus more positive news

Posted 1st April 2022 • Written by •

A community saved Britain’s most remote boozer, there were conservation victories in England, and renewables reached a major milestone, plus more positive news

Britain’s most remote pub was saved

Punters at mainland Britain’s most remote pub have secured the future of their beloved boozer after raising enough money to buy it through a community share offer. The buyout is a triumph not just for locals, but for a model of ownership that is saving many UK pubs. 

Accessible only by boat or a two-day hike through rugged Scottish scenery, The Old Forge is the sole pub in Inverie village (population: 110). For years, it has been a hub for the community and tourists, but its future looked uncertain when the previous owner closed it during winter and put the place up for sale. 

Emboldened by other community buyouts, locals got organised. They formed the Old Forge Community Benefit Society and raised £320,000 through a community share offer, with additional funding coming from the Scottish Land Fund and Community Ownership Fund. The pub is set to reopen at Easter. 

“When you live in a place like this, you need these kind of spaces – they are so much more than a place to go and drink,” Stephanie Harris, the society’s secretary, told Positive News. “We can now tailor what we provide to make sure we are benefiting as many people as possible.”

Wind and solar hit a major milestone

There was good news for the surging renewables sector this week. Analysis revealed that wind and solar generated 10 per cent of global electricity for the first time in 2021. 

Overall, clean energy accounted for 38 per cent of the world’s electricity supply last year, according to climate thinktank Ember. 

However, the positive news was tempered by an increase in the use of coal power. The dirtiest fossil fuel was reportedly burned at its fastest rate since 1985, as demand for energy surged following Covid lockdowns. 

UK bitterns bounced back from the brink

The bittern – the UK’s loudest bird – has bounced back from the brink of a second national extinction, according to Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB). 

The charity’s latest bittern census counted 228 males – the highest number since 1880. The species, which sounds like a foghorn, was pushed to extinction during the Victorian era, but returned to the UK in the 1990s. 

By 1997, however, the male population had slumped to 11, prompting fears that the bird was facing a second national extinction. Subsequent conservation efforts, including wetland restoration, have helped boost numbers. 

Simon Wotton, RSPB senior conservation scientist, said: “The bittern’s recovery shows how quickly nature can bounce back when given the chance.”

Speaking of comeback species…

While 2021 was a bad year overall for the UK’s butterflies (owing to a soggy spring), some endangered species bucked the trend thanks to ongoing conservation work. 

An annual survey of the insects – known as the UK Butterfly Monitoring Scheme – found that the endangered heath fritillary (pictured), which is the focus of conservation efforts in southern England, was among the species that had a good year. Ecologists report that numbers have increased 112 per cent at monitored sites over the last decade. 

Dr Richard Fox, from the charity Butterfly Conservation, said the results “demonstrate what can be achieved through dedicated long-term conservation effort”.

Read More

Click for more Positive News articles from People First Recruitment, London & UK specialists in recruitment for Mandarin speaking jobs, Japanese jobs, Language jobs and jobs in Supply Chain, Procurement and Demand Planning.