DEVASTATED residents are rallying to help well known Redditch man ‘Birdman Nick’ who was left badly beaten beside Arrow Valley Lake early on Monday morning (May 23).
Nick is a popular figure at the lakeside, feeding high quality food to the hungry geese, swans and ducks there.
However sometime after 6am on the morning Nick challenged a man who was letting his dog run free by the lake chasing the young ducklings and goslings – despite the signs saying dogs must be kept on a lead.
Nick asked him to control his dog and this was enough for the owner to turn on him and brutally beat him up.
“He was badly beaten up – his face was in a right mess – this other man had just started hitting him,” said Kevin Allcock of Carlton Blinds who was walking his own dog around the lake and came across Nick.
“He must have been in complete shock, the police were called and an ambulance.”
However before the ambulance could arrive Nick was rushed to the Alexandra Hospital for treatment to his injuries.
The perpetrator has been described as a ‘large white man in a white T-shirt with a black terrier-type dog’.
Police are investigating the incident and are appealing for witnesses to contact them on 101.
To help Nick recover from his injuries and to highlight the incident catch the culprit, Redditch wildlife photographer John Hodges has launched a Just Giving page.
He said: “Nick is a very gentle and polite man who devotes himself to the care of the local birds, feeding them twice a day from the meager benefits he receives.
“Nick chooses not to feed himself rather than miss feeding his friends at the lake.
“Twice a day he walks from his home in Batchley, across town carrying his shopping bag of bird food, come rain or shine.
I see Nick on a regular basis.
“It makes me smile the way he talks about the individual birds and their characters, you can hear the love in his voice when he talks about them, something I very much can relate to.
“His compassion stepped up to brutality that seems to be all around us……he paid the price dearly and we must not turn a blind eye.
“I hope with this fundraiser we can show Nick how much we appreciate the sacrifices he makes for the benefit of our community and wildlife.
“With the money raised here, I hope we can encourage Nick to continue his selfless passion and help fund the expensive bird food he provides every day.
“We all need more people like Nick in our communities, to help educate the next generation about the wonders of nature that need our help and protection.
“Get well soon my friend.”
The aim is to raise £2,000 for Nick. To contribute, visit: https://www.gofundme.com/f/nick-the-redditch-birdman