Help us ensure a long-term future for our wildlife
Keith Fensom, chairman of the Chilterns Group at the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust, needs new volunteers
THE Chilterns Group of volunteers actively supports the local Wildlife Trust in many different ways.
We are around 130 people, all of us interested in wildlife and the countryside in south Buckinghamshire and the Chilterns.
Our focus and objective is to help and support the Wildlife Trust’s nature reserve wardens, to raise awareness of the importance of protecting the wonderful green spaces of the Chilterns and to ensure a long term future for wildlife here.
Some of us are more active than others!
We’re always looking for more volunteers to join our existing team working at Bacombe Hill just outside Wendover, and in Pavis Woods at Dancersend.
The team is carrying out practical conservation work in these two nature reserves that the Wildlife Trust started managing last winter on behalf of Buckinghamshire County Council.
Both reserves offer volunteers wonderful opportunities to enjoy healthy physical exercise and fresh air, with magnificent views and extraordinary wildlife.
The Ridgeway National Trail runs through both nature reserves, attracting hundreds of visitors every week. It is so rewarding to know that the work we’re doing, whether it’s scrub-bashing or keeping a watchful eye on livestock, is helping to make these special places more enjoyable for everyone to visit, whether they’re on a long-distance hike or just out for a couple of hours.
Twice a year we hold a Plant and Produce Market; the next one is on Saturday May 21 from 10am to 1pm at Great Missenden Memorial Centre.
There will be an amazing selection of indoor and outdoor plants, mostly donated plus books, crafts, bric-a-brac and a cafe with tasty homemade produce.
Every winter we organise a series of monthly talks in Great Missenden Memorial Centre.
These are popular events with fascinating topics on wildlife from the Chilterns and wider Thames Valley area and around the world.
Any profits raised from these events are ploughed back into supporting the Wildlife Trust.
Recently we bought and planted specialist fruit trees to recreate an old orchard at Dancersend, which used to be owned by the Rothschild family.
The group also contributed to the successful appeal to purchase Yoesden, the Trust’s nature reserve that nestles in the Radnage valley near Bledlow Ridge.
This is a wildflower haven that’s noted for its variety of butterflies.
If you’ve ever wanted to find out more about your local wildlife, then do take a look at the walks, advertised on the Wildlife Trust’s website www.bbowt.org.uk/whatson.
Members of the Chilterns Group who are experts in fungi, butterflies, wild flowers, birds and insects lead guided walks on several nature reserves in the Chilterns.
We’re campaigners too: writing letters and actively supporting the fight for HS2 to be routed through a bored tunnel under the Chilterns at Wendover.
If this doesn’t happen, there is a serious risk to the water supply of Weston Turville Reservoir, a nature reserve where in winter you may see rare wetland and wading birds such as the bittern.
To find out more about what the Chilterns Group does, go to http://www.bbowt.org.uk/how-youcan-help/volunteer; we’re under the link to Regional Groups.
Help flora and fauna to flourish: Violets at Dancersend
Join us: The volunteers from the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust man a stall at Aylesbury Market