Monday 26 June 2023

Swifts in the Triangle

It’s Midsummer – and the Greenwich swifts are back in town. In good numbers this year.  These extraordinary birds nest in tight colonies under the eaves of suitable buildings. Extraordinary because, apart from nesting, they literally live the rest of their lives in the air, eating, drinking, mating, even sleeping, all on the wing,  and all at great speed.   And you can see all this happening in and over the nesting colony up in the eaves of Davy’s Wine Shop,  on the corner of Greenwich High Road and Kay Way  (by the red telephone booth).  The swifts come back from Africa every year for 3 months, to breed here.   Their numbers in the UK have fallen heavily over the last ten to fifteen years.   So this year’s relative abundance of occupied nests in the Davy’s colony,  and the size of the immature parties of non-breeders,  the “Screamers”, is good news.  


From now till the end of June and through July, the parent swifts will be incubating eggs,  and feeding the hatched fledglings on the insects they catch on the wing. When they have a full load, individual parent birds shoot back up into their nests  at speed.  Then, after feeding their young, they drop down into the air,  and power off again.  They are so quick, you have to focus hard to catch them.  But this year there are enough occupied nests at Davy’s to mean there’s movement into or out of a nest every few minutes.  


Meanwhile, at various times of the day – late mornings seem good – the non breeders gather in small groups, or sometimes larger parties,  and screech and scream close past  the nests,  without entering them, barrelling and twisting just overhead.  These “screamers” were born here last year or the year before,  and aren’t yet ready to mate .  They have already made at least one journey down to Southern Africa,  and one back.  But some will have done this two or even three times. Amazingly, they won’t have touched ground the whole time.  Watch out for the screaming parties above Davy’s in July, as they test out the nests, and the Greenwich skies,  ahead of becoming parents themselves back in Greenwich next year or the year after.  When they will finally, briefly, fall out of the sky.  And if you do manage to see the action, wish both parents and screamers well in the first half of August, as they leave Greenwich, and head off back to Africa. 

Thursday 8 June 2023

Local Security Update

The SNT ward panel met on Tuesday 23 May.

The ward are currently looking for new members from all areas of Greenwich Park and Greenwich Creekside wards. 


Local crime statistic are available at


See below for a brief lowdown on the main issues recently in each ward:


Creekside- Street robberies and phone snatches along Creek Road. The robberies happen throughout the day and cover Creek Road, Millennium Quay, New Capital Quay, Town Centre and areas around Greenwich Park and High Road. Ongoing operations in the area to tackle this


Park ward- robbery issue (phones snatches), violent crime (drugs related near town centre), distraction burglaries 

Re. Distraction burglaries, please try to raise awareness of this issues elderly/vulnerable residents (friends, neighbours, family). Individuals may approach addresses with high vis and attempt to gain access by saying they have noticed an issue. 

- Bike thefts continue

- Graffiti in the colonnades and in the cycle route at ORNC

- Recent car thefts in area reported, particularly of VW and Alfa Romeo cars

Ashburnham Triangle- There was a recent robbery in broad daylight in the area. Male was followed home from the DLR during the day and was robbed at knife point on his doorstep. SNT officers have looked into the investigation and are going to visit the victim.


Our local SNT officer is PC Jaime Welch who is supported by PCSO AK.