Work to restore Whitehawk’s chalk hawk, carried out by volunteers including children last month, was deemed too risky for offenders to undertake by the probation service.
The Friends of Sheepcote Valley and Serendipity Enterprising Solutions organised a couple of sessions to return the bird, carved into the hills above Whitehawk, to its former glory.
But a request for help from offenders carrying out community service was turned down on the grounds of health and safety.
A Surrey and Sussex Probation Trust spokeman said: “We are required to ensure that we can arrange for offenders to carry out their work in a way that is safe for them and the public.
“Regrettably with this project there was a concern following a risk assessment that the nature of the terrain was such that there could easily be an accident for which Surrey and Sussex Probation Trust could be held liable.
“We were disappointed to have been unable to assist in this project because we are very committed to working with community groups in Whitehawk and are currently involved in a number of projects in that area.
“In total offenders have carried out 13,000 hours of Community Payback work in Brighton and Hove this year.
“Should the opportunity to be involved in this project arise in the future we would reasess the situation.”
Hat tip: Whitehawk.uk.net.
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