Anyrate, we decided to go it alone, as we thought
it would be easier to produce the information ourselves. We got a bad shock
as it proved much trickier and more expensive in a lot of respects. The
scope was widened to include all marine life around the British Isles and
not just the organisms found between the tides. The BMLSS officially started
on 6 June 1990 and the first issue of Glaucus
was published and distributed on 26 September 1990. Somewhere we must have
a list of the starting members, but I remember that Ron Barrett provided
valuable help in the first two years.
Although, we are an informal society, I thought it important that the aims and purposes were fully established at the start. We are a wildlife study society publishing information and are not a conservation or campaigning group and this is forbidden in the Constitution. The BMLSS is an Institute of Biology Affiliated Society.
In 1993 when Glaucus was properly printed, we thought that it was now worthwhile, but the standard did not improve until Jane Lilley joined and did most of the sub-editing. In those days our primitive computer did not even have a spell checker! The Shorewatch Project commenced under the current name in January 1995, and Torpedo Electronic News in August 1996. The first issue of the bi-monthly Shorewatch Newsletter was issued on 27 February 1997. Alan Pemberton started the Scottish web site in June 1996 and it was chosen as a new Scientist “Web Site of the Day” in November of the same year. The English web site did not commence until 1 January 1997, and has since been recommended both by Encyclopaedia Britannica and the BBC.
For the whole of its ten years the BMLSS has shown
a large annual deficit. Income is almost entirely from member’s subscriptions
and I have put in a subsidy every year. From the outset we guessed that
it would hard to attract enough members so the future lies in co-operating
with all other groups to achieve the
We believe that work of such groups like the BMLSS and the Porcupine
Society are essential for biological recording in the 21st century.
1 August 2000
BRITISH MARINE WILDLIFE FORUM PAGE