A Fenlander's Diary

PUBLISHED: 12:10 10 February 2006 | UPDATED: 21:40 28 May 2010

IF an Internet offer seems too good to be true, it almost certainly is, say local trading standards officers. February has been designated international scams awareness month. The campaign in the UK is being led by the Office of Fair Trading and the Depa

IF an Internet offer seems too good to be true, it almost certainly is, say local trading standards officers.

February has been designated international scams awareness month. The campaign in the UK is being led by the Office of Fair Trading and the Department of Trade and Industry in a bid to alert the public to the variety of scams being operated in the UK, but often originating from abroad.

Trading officer Graham Clarke tells me "The fact is that there is literally a scam for everyone, and any individual could be targeted by these extremely clever fraudsters.

"We are also keen to hear from anyone who feels that they may have been a victim or felt that they had been made an offer that was to good to be true - if it seems to good to be true, it usually is."

Perhaps my 20-year-old niece should get in touch. She innocently sold a mobile phone on E-bay recently and burst into tears when a postal order failed to arrive from Nigeria after she had spent £10 posting it.

NOW here's a fascinating way to discover for yourself that spring might just be around the corner.

Welney Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust is launching a springwatch-style survey.

FENology (a play on phenology which means the changing of the seasons,) is inviting all to take part at the WWWT reserve.

Sarah Graves, learning manager, tells me: "To get you started our spring-is-in-the-air family trail will open on the reserve for half-term from Saturday.

"You can also join in and help build a bird's nest or even try your luck as a great crested newt in search of a mate."

A talk about moths is also being given on Tuesday at 7.30pm at the reserve.

For more information contact Sarah on 01353 860711 or e-mail: info.welney@wwt.org.uk

LATEST earwigging from Fenland Hall suggests March will beat Wisbech in the battle for the deputy leadership.

In other words Councillor Kit Owen is odds-on favourite (bookies are quoting 4-7) to become deputy leader when the Tory group meets to decide next Thursday.

Councillor Simon King from Wisbech is still unfancied at 11-1 but it seems the odds on the third candidate, Councillor Fred Yeullett, have narrowed from 7-1 to a respectable 5-2.

All three candidates will have their presentational skills put to the test when each must stand up in front of their colleagues to outline their vision for Fenland.

Readers experiencing a sense of deja vu will recall a similar experience only nine months ago when Pop Jolley won the nomination, only to quit before Christmas.

THE BBC tells me it will be staging and filming its own village show somewhere in Cambridgeshire this summer.

But it is keen for anyone wishing to enter to get in touch so the programme makers can come along and film you growing, tending and nurturing your prize-winning pumpkins or carrots or any other traditional pursuit.

For details call 020 7432 2935 or e-mail gbvs@12yard.com. Or visit www.bbc.co.uk/gardening

IT seems, from an account in another local publication, that the All Witches Meetup network hopes to establish a foothold in the Fens with the setting up of a witches' group in Wisbech.

Which reminded me of the day last year when I chanced upon the website www.witches.org and discovered the spell allegedly being cast by the witches of Ely.

"Just wanted to say thank you to the witches of Ely for providing a sensible, informative site for eclectic, solitaries like myself," wrote one correspondent.

"I have been blessed with the gift which has taken me over seven years to acknowledge and I hold this insight in utmost reverence.

"I wear my sign with honour, love and hope but am not worthy yet... to call myself 'witch'."

All of which suggests an intriguing addition to Fenland cultural life.

ACCORDING to a county council survey only 55 per cent of the population think vandalism, graffiti and other deliberate damage to property or vehicles is a 'very big/fairly big problem'.

Heaven knows what the other 45 per cent of people surveyed thought.

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