The Trust offers a great variety of volunteering opportunities throughout the year – we currently have about 150 volunteers who have been active in one way or another over the past year, getting involved in things like dragonfly surveys, dormice monitoring, himalayan balsam bashing, assisting with events, providing information to the public, bat box checking, working in the office, bird surveys, tree planting, litter picking - the list goes on!
We run a regular group of conservation volunteers, on a Sunday and Wednesday, once a month, between September and June. Have a look at the list of tasks below, and get in touch with us if you would like to find out more, or just come along to see what we do. All we ask is that volunteers must be over the age of 18 and have a reasonable level of fitness.
Our practical conservation tasks range from coppicing, reedbed management, hedgelaying, surveying and footpath maintenance, and are usually carried out on one of our nature reserves. However, these are just a few of the things we do, and jobs can vary depending on the great British weather!
We tend to work out in most weathers, so it's advisable to come prepared with waterproofs, sturdy boots or wellies, and the all-important packed lunch.
Other volunteering opportunities
As well as the regular group of volunteer rangers there are currently more than 100 other wonderful volunteers taking part in such diverse activities as checking bat boxes, sending out membership packages, monitoring bird numbers, assessing the condition of footpaths, and giving out information to visitors at the Gateway Centre. Their contribution makes a real difference, and we are extremely grateful to them for all their dedication and enthusiasm.
If you would like to find out about the many volunteering opportunities we can offer, please contact the CWP Trust offices on 01793 752413, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Balsam Bashing volunteers required!
Help weed out alien invader
It may be pink, it may look pretty, but this ‘alien’ plant species is taking over our rivers and you can help stop the spread!
Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens glandulifera) is a large annual plant native to the Himalayas which was introduced to gardens in Britain back in 1839. Since then it has escaped and is now to be found on the bank and edges of rivers and streams throughout the UK.
The plant is an extremely efficient at taking over new areas, as the mature seed pods are explosive to touch, spreading the 800 seeds from each plant up to 6m away. As an annual, it dies back in the autumn, but this leaves a bare riverbank which is very vulnerable to erosion. However on the positive side the plant has very shallow roots so is very easy to pull out of the soil by hand.
“ Working in groups to eradicate this invasive species is part of a much wider strategic plan to improve the water courses within the Cotswold Water Park, so we would love to see many more people come out and help with the Balsam bashing – it’s a very satisfying and rewarding exercise.” Petrina Brown, WILD Biodiversity Officer for the CWPT.
The Cotswold Water Park Trust is working on a project (as part of WILD, Water with Integrated Local Delivery ) to eradicate Himalayan Balsam from watercourses within the Cotswold Water Park, and are looking for as many volunteers as they can muster over the coming months to help do some Balsam bashing! Every Tuesday and Thursday, along the rivers in the CWP such as the Churn, we are running volunteer work parties aka ‘ Plant Pulls’ between 10am and 3pm – people can stay all day or just come along and do a couple of hours. It is not physically challenging, but a level of mobility is required. Why not come along with a friend and spend a couple of hours outdoors in the sunshine, helping to save the rivers from this highly invasive plant. If you are interested in helping to weed out this alien invader please do get in touch to find out more.
Call the Cotswold Water Park Trust on 01793 752413 or email Petrina.email@example.com
We would love to hear from you!