Cruise Arrivals


RSPB responds to Hoy warden restructure

Aerial view of Hoy Sound.

The RSPB has responded to the controversial news that they are removing a full-time warden form the Hoy nature restructure, encouraging people to attend tonight’s public meeting on the matter.

In a statement, the RSPB says it remains committed to the communities it is part of.

The full statement reads: “As a charity with the conservation of birds and wildlife as its central priority, RSPB Scotland must find the best way to protect and restore nature in Orkney with the resources we have available, while maintaining the responsibilities and commitments we have to our staff, nature reserves and the communities we are part of.

“To do our best for nature, it is imperative that we make some changes to the structure of the small team of wardens who look after our reserves in Orkney.

“Reallocating some resource to our suite of eight Mainland reserves will help us to meet our objectives most effectively, and ensure priority work can be delivered and is shared more equally across the team.

“The responsibilities of the current warden role based in Hoy are split 60/40, between Hoy and Orkney Mainland nature reserves. However, the practicalities of this are challenging. Under the new structure, there will be no reduction in staff time dedicated to the Hoy Nature Reserve.

“Hoy will retain a three days per week allocation based on the island, while the other two days per week will become part of a full-time role resulting from a wider restructure. This role will have the Orkney Mainland as its base, and deliver work across RSPB Scotland’s suite of Mainland reserves.

“We recognise that the Hoy warden is a valued part of the community, and understand the concerns regarding these changes. The restructure has followed a full review of our reserve staffing and associated workloads, which identified areas that need increased input to maximise conservation benefits.

“We encourage everyone with an interest in this matter to attend the meeting at the North Walls Community Centre at 7.30pm on Friday 24 March, where you will be able to share your views with us and we will give more detail on why the changes are necessary and our continued commitment to the Hoy Nature Reserve.”

A petition, opposing the changes has been shared online, and has attracted some 238 signatures in three days.

A public meeting will be held at the North Walls Centre, tonight, Friday March 24, concerning the move and the RSPB welcomes everyone with an interest to attend, and share their views.