Vivien Boyes's Letter

The skylarks of Warren Farm who saved my sanity during Lockdown,

Remember those early days of Lockdown when the human world had stopped? Trapped in the drudge of "permitted daily exercise", I circled the park past its taped up benches. Then, one day, beyond the canal and the industrial estate, I found a wide open meadow, full of speedwell and buttercups and I saw you fly.

Remember how warm it was and how those thermals lifted you until you were a dot lost in sky? My eyes watered as I watched you. All that tethered you to the earth was a thread of song which reeled me in, bringing memories of childhood into the dark mood which had swallowed me

I am writing now from uncertain times. Will you be here next spring and the next? When I was small, there were so many of you rising from the meadows of those half-forgotten summers but not now, not here, on the suburban edge of London. Barely a handful of breeding populations of skylarks remain but can we even save you? Your red list status means little neither is there much protection for the piece of Metropolitan Open Land where you nest despite the pleasure it brings to so many. There are plans, there are always plans and people with power to make them. The threat of a football training ground burying your meadow was fiercely fought off but now there may be cricket pitches.

Each year as I hold on to your song, I long to hear your children sing like this and your children's children too but will this letter even reach you? What is your future? I dread the time when your song no longer scribbles across our summer skies.

Were you Inspired by Vivien Boyes's letter?

Submit your own letter today, it only takes a few minutes and it will help show the public are ready and willing to take action on climate change – and we need the government to act now.

Submit a Letter

The Great Big Green Week

The Great Big Green Week is the UK’s biggest ever celebration of community action to tackle climate change. Find out how you can get involved.

Find Out More