We were alerted to a situation last week where an asbestos roof was ripped off an old Victorian building in St Neots, a week before 6 pairs of breeding swifts are due to return to their nest-sites under the asbestos. The old Brook Street factory site, recently occupied by the ATS tyre company has held a thriving colony of Swifts for many years.
|Air brick liner about to be cut with angle grinder|
|Completed nest-box with roofing felt extension|
The developers were unable to allow more than 1 air brick-liner per nest-box. Ideally we would have liked to have used 1.5 or even 2 liners per nest-box. However, although the length of the liners is 208mm, we have managed to increase the internal length to 270mm by using the space normally occupied by mortar.
We will have more on this story as it unfolds.
|10 completed swift bricks|
As one can see from this post the bricklayers thought that they could not allow the use of roofing felt within the wall. So we ended up with nesting spaces about 210mm x 175mm, which we hope the Swifts will like - it is certainly a nicer space than what they had before. In conversation with the bricklayers, they agreed that, with the benefit of hindsight, longer nest-boxes made of 1.5 air brick liners would have been acceptable.
|Computer model of swift brick in situ, behind barge board|