WHEN I saw Chris Lloyd’s column about the influx of hawfinches (Echo, Feb 1), my memorybanks kicked in. During the 1980s, I had business with a timber importer at Hartlepool and made several visits to their office in the docks.

Right outside the office windows was a large bramble bush and in clear view were a pair of hawfinches, a bird I’d never seen before.

I told this story to a very keen birder only last year and she had little doubt that should hawfinches be seen in Hartlepool today, an awful lot of bird watchers would want to see them as they were pretty rare.

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Now it appears we have foreign visitors looking for a free feed up.

I assume that Brexit will put an end to this sort of thing?

Martin Birtle, Billingham