Dove Saga |Sully|Sue’s View

Flippin’ eck, whoever said doves were symbols of peace sure didn’t see it all kicking off at the Captain’s Wife this week!

My much scrolled Facebook feed has been full of outraged ornithologists flapping over the fate of a bunch of birds and their babies.

The ill-fated decision by the Sully pub to just block up the dovecote has even been described as ‘barbaric’ and ‘cruel beyond belief.’

And whilst I’m no fan of our feathered friends, I think our bird-loving locals have kind of got a point.

So does the Sully pub now apparently. They have done a u turn unblock of the 80 year old structure quicker that you can sing the famous Prince song.

Bit harsh wasn’t it to just fill the whole thing in, leave the doves, and their young, allegedly trapped in the tower.

And then call the cops on the powerful protestors – even those who managed to cleverly cut some of the captive birds out.

Even harsher is the lesson learnt by the Captain’s Wife who certainly felt the pain and pressure of a successful social media stir up.

It went so viral it filled local feeds, made national news, led to the sharp shut down of the Pub’s Trip Advisor Page.

And saw investigations started by both the RSPCA and RSBP – not the SWP though who confirm no law was broken.

A local bird rescue group has now been called in by Mitchells and Butler, who own the cosy and cwtchy pub on the coast, to tackle the dovecote dilemma.

Defending their decision to block the building, they say that the mass of birds flying in and out caused a serious issue.

And they cite both Health and Safety, and Hygiene reasons, for the rapid removal.

I get that too. I’m certainly no expert but am vaguely aware that birds can carry a whole host of disease including ecoli.

Who wants to sit slurping in a bright beer garden on a sultry Summer’s day next to a dovecote of potential danger – not me.

Although to be honest, I’ve been going to the Captains Wife since I was a naughty little nipper and I’ve never even noticed the bloody thing.

I was always more caught up in the legendary ghost tales of haunted happenings there.

So I must have thought all that cooing was a spooky spectre or something.

Surprisingly, I also read this week that people flock from all over just to see the darling doves.

That’s news to me too. I just go for a sizzling steak, a pint of Peroni and the cracking company.

Whatever. I just hope that this week’s mayhem means the birds stay safe, the public protected, and a sensible, not sealed up, solution is sorted.

Talk about storm in a dovecote.

Speak soon.




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Sue Vincent-Jones, writing as Mrs SVJ, is a Barry born journalist, editor, and communications specialist. She blogs about Barry – and her life in the wider world, through the eyes of a, quirky and queer, local girl done good.

Sue’s Views is the reboot of her much-loved infamous B&D opinion column from back in the day. Recently resurrected in Style Of The City Magazine, it focuses on the hot topics we are all talking about in beautiful Barry, and beyond – the good, the bad, the ugly.

Mrs SVJ, Barry’s Boldest Blogger, can be contacted here.