Meet The Team
I was raised in an outgoing family of writers, artists, naturalists and adventurers. My great aunt married the ill-fated Captain Robert Falcon Scott, and their son Peter, who was my godfather, introduced me to the importance of understanding evolution and valuing the beauty of all wildlife.
My first job was feeding ducks at his Wildfowl Trust in Slimbridge. Later working in the original Cromer zoo, then 10 years as a gamekeeper in Scotland and in Norfolk on the Holkham Estate where I soon branched into wildlife cinematography for RSPB and BBC and training birds for TV and cinema films. Followed by 30 years as screen-writer and producer at ITV Anglia and BBC in Norwich, and since then making films and writing for conservation groups.
Meanwhile I have managed the wooded Templewood Estate in Northrepps dealing with Forestry Commission, DEFRA, Norfolk Rivers Trust, CLA and Mun Valley Farmland Cluster.
As a young teenager my first enthusiasm for raptors and owls coincided precisely with the catastrophic decline in the Peregrine Falcon populations in UK and USA due agricultural chemical poisoning. Hence, my acute awareness of the Peregrine’s vulnerability at the top of the food chain, and therefore as indicators of ecological imbalances.
Currently I promote better management methods for wildlife on Norfolk farmland, the Cromer Green Spaces and of course the protecton of Cromer’s beautiful Peregrines.
I always aim to encourage wildlife education and networking of enthusiasts and conservationists, whatever their specialisation.
Hiya I'm Chris, Professional photographer by trade. My love of peregrines comes from when I first saw a DVD about them at Derby back in 2009. A few years later in 2011 we had a pair turn up at Norwich Cathedral, I went to photograph them and was hooked. I started to document them throughout the year and soon became a regular at the Cathedral, running a Facebook and Twitter account dedicated to the Norwich peregrines.
When I heard Cromer had a pair of peregrines on the Church I paid a visit and witnessed them mating. I was invited to take part in the initial visit to the top of the Church tower to investigate the possibilites of installing a nesting platform and camera. After the peregrines started to visit the newly installed platform we established the Cromer Peregrine Project. After a successful first season I updated the cameras and we now stream the live images online for the enjoyment of thousands of people from all over the planet.
I have installed peregrine cameras all over the UK as well as given advice on the set up and running of CCTV systems for all sorts of birds, the success of the Cromer set up has led to a glut of copycat installs, I like to think I have taken the world of bird nest monitoring to the next level and I am proud of my achievements in this sector.
Together with my wife Kim we run the Cromer peregrines social media accounts as well as visiting Cromer regularly to take pictures of these amazing birds. The love shown to these birds by the townsfolk of Cromer never fails to amaze me and they always draw a crowd, especially when the juveniles first take flight, they fan out onto the local buildings which can offer excellent views of the young peregrines.
We also run the hugely successful Skipper Photography business, through this business we donate pictures to be used on various items of merchandise which all raises money for the Cromer Peregrine Project.
I qualified as a Chartered Accountant 40 years ago, following which I worked for some 20 years in industry and 15 years in the charity sector. As a lifelong birder, living in Norfolk was the ultimate dream, which I fulfilled by moving to Thornage two years ago after my retirement.
My name is Zoe Smith, and I am a raptor biologist with over a decade’s experience working in raptor conservation in the UK and Internationally. I am currently a board member of the Raptor Research Foundation working on the conservation of raptors globally.
Some of my career highlights were working in Dadia national park, Greece in partnership with WWF Greece an SPA with over 26 species of raptors using the area. The work included radio-tracking Cinerous vultures and collecting wing tag and ring data of Cinereous and Griffon vultures from the ‘vulture restaurant site’ We also monitored the effect of windfarms on raptors using point count surveys and carcass searches. Following this I was a spring Intern at Hawk Mountain USA where I learnt to identify and count American raptors on migration. I was also involved in educating the public and learnt the importance of international partnerships in conservation.
I was very fortunate to be a volunteer at Batumi raptor count in the Republic of Georgia. It is an amazing Eurasian fly way bottle neck with over 1 million raptors passing each autumn.
I have also been migration count supervisor at the Strait of Messina in Italy for Ornis Italica combining the use of radar with field observations to record and analyse the migration.
One of my biggest career achievements was becoming a raptor counter in Mexico’s Veracruz ‘River of Raptors’ projects one of the biggest migration counts in the world, with 4.5 million raptors passing each autumn. With around 25 species being seen on migration a mind-blowing experience and a great spectacle.
In the UK I have worked for the RSPB on two Hen harrier breeding surveys covering North Wales and Scotland. I also carried out my MSc research studying Buzzards on Langholm moor in Scotland. I have also worked for the Hawk and Owl Trust at Urban Peregrine Project Officer at Norwich Cathedral. Currently I am working with the Roy Dennis Wildlife Foundation on the reintroduction and species restoration of the White- tailed Eagle to England
I am enthusiastic and energetic and overall, very passionate about birds of prey and their habitats. The Peregrine is such a charismatic and cosmopolitan species it’s a real honour to be studying and promoting them in the UK through the Cromer Peregrine Project.
I am also part of the People for Peregrines UK collaboration project
I hope to see you sometime at the Cromer Church watch point. If you would like a group talk about Peregrines please contact: email@example.com
I have been interested in wildlife all my life and birds in particular. It was one of the things that brought me to Norfolk 25 years ago. Since living here I spent over 10 years as a volunteer for the Hawk and Owl Trust at Sculthorpe Moor where I was heavily involved with the Norwich Peregrine Project during the first couple of years as the Volunteer Co-ordinator. I have also assisted in collecting data of bird records for the Cley Bird Club when it looked as if it would have to close down, and I have been involved with the Cromer Peregrine Project from the start – first of all as volunteer Co-ordinator, a role I handed over last year to Mike Harmer - and now as Secretary.
I am a mother and grandmother and have tried to pass on my passion and experience to my family – which seems to be succeeding. And in my working life I have been a secretary/PA and an Education Social Worker. Consequently, I like working with people and enjoy sharing my knowledge.
The steering group members are Kim Skipper, Roger Fickling, Nigel Redman, Phil Littler and Mike Harmer