Morecambe birdman sentenced for breach of ASBO

John Wilkinson aka Pigeon Man of Morecambe. If used please credit COPYRIGHT Docubyte,
John Wilkinson aka Pigeon Man of Morecambe. If used please credit COPYRIGHT Docubyte,

The Morecambe ‘birdman’ said he was surprised to avoid prison after breaching his Anti-Social Behaviour Order for feeding his feathery friends.

Pigeon-lover John Wilkinson appeared before Lancaster Magistrates for breaching the terms of his ASBO and was given a 12 month community and supervision order.

Speaking to the Lancaster Guardian shortly after the case Mr Wilkinson said he thought he would behind bars.

He said: “I am surprised. I was expecting to go to prison. I was singled out, I don’t think I have done anything wrong, it is unjust I feel. I have had a lot of support, I have many friends I never thought I had.”

Jo Bailey was there to support her friend on April 8 and said: “It’s local businesses, not neighbours, they isolate John for feeding pigeons.

“He needs somewhere allocated to him where he can feed the pigeons in peace.”

The court heard Mr Wilkinson was seen on two occasions with another man on August 6 and 19 between Marine Road West and Regent Road feeding pigeons more than half a kilo of bird seed.

He had pleaded guilty to the two offences at an earlier hearing. This was the fourth time the council commenced proceedings in relation to breaches of the order.

The council first applied for an ASBO against Mr Wilkinson in 2012 due to a number of complaints from residents.

Lancaster City Council extended an existing ASBO for a further year to December 5 2015.

The conditions do not prevent Mr Wilkinson from feeding pigeons, but restrict it within 100m of his home on Cavendish Road.

Outside that radius he can feed up to half a kilo of bird seed between the hours of 9.30am and 10.30am on a Monday, Wednesday or Friday. He cannot feed birds at any other time.

Magistrates also ordered Mr Wilkinson to pay a £60 victim surcharge and £80 towards the prosecution’s costs.

Mr Halewood Dodd, defending Mr Wilkinson said: “Every town around the world has flocks of feral pigeons yet they’re seen as a pest in Lancaster and Morecambe and Mr Wilkinson has been subjected to an ASBO as a result.”