May 05 2022

Film of Avon Valley where the Woodland trust began and South West update

Just in case you missed the online National Volunteer Conference, here is some of what was on the South West area

A huge thank you to all of our volunteers who took part in this video. Thanks also to Paul Allen the site manager, Rachel Harries Community and Engagement Officer who worked with Guy a local filmmaker to produce this film  which you can view here

We also had a live session with a panel consisting of Stan Abbot Estate Manager South West, Rosie Walker Regional External Affaires Officer, and Jane Craven Community and Engagement Manager South West, we took some interesting questions from the volunteers who attended and also gave a quick presentation giving an update on what has been happening within the region. Which is below

In 1972 a group of friends gathered round a kitchen table in Devon to discuss saving a local wood: that day the Woodland Trust was born.

In the South West we have over 200 woods with over 400 volunteers carrying out over 600 different roles

The value of volunteering is outstanding , here are some fingers in in 2019 nationally  volunteers contributed  318,407 hours (42,454Days ) equates to £2,721, 207.67  (2 million, 7 hundred….) , which is a very significant and worthwhile contribution

The UK’s woodland has some of our richest habitats providing homes for thousands of species including our most loved animals and plants. Not only are we trying to protect woodlands we are protecting wildlife too. A great number of our volunteering roles monitor wildlife, providing valuable data. We work in partnership with other charities and organisations to protect these eco systems and to make connections to communities and the public and encourage them to stand up for protecting their woodlands and build a closer relationship with the opportunities they offer.

The plan is to plant  thousands of trees creating a haven for wildlife, we’re confident this land can become a flagship woodland for the Trust in the south-west, with a network of paths giving easy access to visitors and the local community. We are recruiting for a  volunteer woodland working group, and volunteers to help us survey the wildlife on site to help us get a baseline survey done. We plan on planting the 54 hector site with thousands of trees .

  • Ensured that every Council Local Plan that is reviewed includes strong and enforceable tree protection policies; including Cornwall AONB Management Plan, South Glos Green Infrastructure Strategy and Taunton Garden Town Planning Policy.
  • Ensured Tamar AONB incorporated UKISG in its tree policies to ensure bio-security and tree health – a new approach we can push for elsewhere.
  • Working with Herefordshire Council to adopt Trees and New Development Guidance – an approach we can promote for all Councils.
  • against loss and threat: opposing the A417 rerouting through the Cotswolds due to impact on ancient and veteran trees

Successful acquisition and simultaneous lease to Avon Wildlife Trust of Hutton Woods: 70 acres/28 ha of ancient semi natural woodland. Completed in March

  • Progress at Fingle:
    • 333 HA of woodland in restoration
    • 60KM of access created
    • 18,000 volunteer hours, with 4,000 individuals at over 100 events
    • Dartmoor’s Wooded Valleys – in preparation!
    • A follow on to Fingle and Moor Than Meets the Eye
    • Landscape Scale Project that will be more than restoration!
    • Ausewell Restoration has commenced with the National Trust
    • Volunteering is playing a vital role in managing the wood and doing wildlife surveys

100% of Woodland Trust woods are under management in accordance with UKWAS standards


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