Nature offers escape from pandemic pandemonium and a chance to steady mental instability caused by suffering or loss.

Among the best places to sample nature’s healing sights and sounds is Swanscombe marshes, a peaceful, unspoiled setting unencumbered by vehicular traffic.

Garganey, Britain’s only summer visiting duck, swims here while swallows and swifts chase insects overhead and cuckoos and nightingales join warblers in continuous chorus. Grass snakes and common lizards bask, man orchids grow and abundant insects include butterflies and the rare jumping spider.

This may be their last summer if developers are cleared to bury Swanscombe peninsular beneath a cornucopia of concrete.

There have been two important developments since this column registered disgust over plans to construct a “Disneyland-style” theme park on the 250 hectare(620-acre) site. A planning request has been submitted and the peninsular declared a Site of Special Scientific Interest-a designation that does not guarantee development plans being binned.

Wild Things: 'A grave mistake'

Man Orchid by Donna Zimmer

Man Orchid by Donna Zimmer

Are there weaknesses in the developers’ case ?

Jobs are promised to local people. Yet there was talk of a floating hotel-boat to house construction workers. Local workers wouldn’t need on-site accommodation.

Concerns about incoming traffic overloading roads already choked by Bluewater-bound vehicles met a startling response. An idea to transport visitors by ferry was er floated. How ? Directly opposite Swanscombe peninsular, Grays offers the shortest cross-Thames ferry embarkation point. Huge parking areas for the cars and coaches of customers boarding ferries to Fairy Land would be required there - perhaps meaning house demolition. A dock would need to be constructed, too.

Wild Things: An unusual visitor

Tilbury, further along the Essex coast, may be suitable. It already has docks but cross-Thames voyages would be extended. Either way, a dock at Swanscombe must be built. With purchase, staffing and maintenance costs of ferry boats the bill for such a scheme would be astronomical and ongoing. And what happens when fog descends ? Regular ferries at Swanscombe are as likely as fairies at the bottom of my garden.

This planning application will be kicked around like a political football but you can help prevent Swanscombe wildlife falling victim to wild ideas.

Read more about the protest campaign and sign a petition here:

Read about actions Save Swanscombe Wildlife Group are taking at: