Bristol University Conservation Group

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Boiling Wells City Farm

From 10am to 2pm on Friday 12th June we will be providing some last minute help to Boiling Wells site of St Werburghs City Farm. They are holding their Summer Fair over the weekend for which we will do some scrub clearance and path maintenance. Also for those interested they are also asking for helpers at the fair itself, which will earn you a ticket, a drink and a meal voucher.

If you are interested in joining the trip please email our vice-president, Alex.

Going Green in Bristol

Bristol will be holding its annual Festival of Nature on Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th June at the Harbourside with a packed programme of events and activities.

Bristol’s Big Green Week is running from 6th to 21st June with a wide variety of events (including over 120 free ones) across the city.

As you probably will have heard, Bristol is proud to be the 2015 European Green capital. While already an hub for all thing sustainable, this has put green matters at the forefront of the region’s agenda with the city being an international pioneer in sustainability. As well numerous events throughout the year the projects launched from Bristol 2015 will create a lasting green legacy for the local area.

Anglesey

This year for our end-of-summer residential trip we’re going back to the island of Anglesey off of the north coast of Wales. The trip will be from Sunday 13th to Friday 18th September. We will be helping out the North Wales Wildlife Trust at local nature reserves and exploring the island.

We will be staying at the Lligwy bunk house which will cost £7 per night (i.e. £35 each for the whole trip). There will be additional costs for transport and food. Do not worry if you cannot make the entire trip – it is fine if you join us for just a couple of days.

This trip is a highlight of the conservation year and always a lot of fun. If you are interested in going please email Emily the week so she can get an idea of numbers for planning and let you know more details about the trip.

Dolebury Warren

Update: Though only four of us managed to go on the trip we were able to help the AWT build a sheep-proof dry-stone wall. The beautiful summer weather provided and excellent opportunity to go on a butterfly tour of the hill-fort of Dolebury Warren and admire the impressive views. Once back in Bristol we headed to the Grain Barge to some much welcome food and drink by the river.


Our last trip of the academic year will be on Sunday 7th June to Dolebury Warren with the Avon Wildlife Trust. We will be helping them out with an ongoing dry stone walling project. This trip will be an excellent way to get outdoors after the stress of exam season (here’s wishing everyone the best of luck).

If you would like to go please email our new president Emily Ramsden by Sunday 31st May. Spaces are limited so if oversubscribed those going will be picked at random and will be informed by an email with more details about the day. (As per usual you must be a member of BUCG to attend.)

Summer Picnic Social

Update: The sun was out for the final social of the academic year. Free from exams stress and fuelled by picnic food, fun was found running around the Downs after frisbees, balls and fellow conservationist (the latter two often hidden in dense thickets).  The social extended into the early evening, in part due to Jimmy’s impressively dedicated and impossible to find hiding spot.


On Saturday 6th June will be having a picnic on the Downs to celebrate the end of exams and the beginning of the summer holiday. Feel free to bring any food, drinks and games. We are meeting at the water tower at 2pm and should be nearby if you want to join us later. You can find the event on Facebook here.

Fortunately the forecast is for some suitably sunny weather though we can go to the Kings Arms at the top of Whiteladies Road in case of rain.

AGM

Update: In keeping with the fun-loving nature of BUCG the AGM was suitably informal. A few motions were passed to make adjustments to the constitution and most importantly the new committee was elected. These familiar faces include some previous committee members as well as new ones:

President: Emily Ramsden
Vice-President: Alex Rought-Rought
Treasurer: Katherine Pugsley
Secretaries: Jess Bampton & Emily Stevens
Social Secretaries: Emma Eastcott & Bea Cornu-Hewitt
Tools & Safety: Hayden Field & George Upton
Webmaster: Christopher Lock
Providence Plantation Officer: Stephen Le Fanu

This enthusiastic team are sure to deliver yet another great year of conservation. Hand-overs will be sorted out shortly and you can expect the first trips of the new committee this summer.


The time is coming up for our Annual General Meeting which this year will be held in the King’s Arms at the top of Whiteladies Road on Wednesday 29th April (time to be confirmed). At the AGM we will talk about how the year has gone, discuss and vote on any motions raised as well as elect the new committee.

The committee positions available are as follows:

  • President – runs the society, organises trips and transport
  • Vice-President – assists the president with a variety of task and sorts out clothing
  • Treasurer – in charge of finances
  • Secretary – (two positions: welfare and fund-raising) takes minutes at meetings, in charge of tea, biscuits, sweets and the like (welfare) and liaise with external organisations to secure funds (fund-raising)
  • Tools and Safety Officer – (two positions) takes care of tools and in charge of health & safety
  • Social Secretary – (two positions) organises all social events
  • Webmaster – responsible for the website and mailing lists
  • Providence Plantation Officer – in charge of woodland we manage, Providence Plantation. Plans work for the site and liaises with other organisations such as the Avon Wildlife Trust to work out a plan of action for the site.

Being on the committee is a fun and great experience to become more involved with the society, work together in enthusiastic team to make a difference. Plus it looks great on your CV! No prior experience is required – most of us start from scratch with some advice from our predecessor. If you want to run for a position or have any question you can email our current President, Jess. You can also just stand spontaneously on the day. You are free to run for multiple roles however you can only have one.

You can find our constitution here which contains more details about each committee position. If you would like to propose amendments to the constitution or any other motions please email Jess by Sunday 19th April.

Providence Plantation

Update: On the last trip before the AGM we cleared plenty of brambles and buddleja which fuelled our first bonfire at Providence upon which marshmallows were toasted. The summery weather fortunately decided to stay around for the trip.


On Sunday 26th April we will heading to Providence Plantation for our first trip of the new term. Activities will likely include: path maintenance, coppicing, continuation of the butterfly glade and the chopping of brambles.

Providence Plantation is a piece of woodland owned by the University just outside of Bristol. It is an ongoing project for BUCG and UBU.

We will travel their by bus from Bristol bus station so make sure to bring money for the bus fare. A student day ticket is £3 (£4.40 without discount – so have your student card with you). The event itself is free. Please email Jess by 6pm on Wednesday 22nd April if you would like to come along. (As per usual you must be a member to attend the trip.) If too many people sign up names will be picked at random. You will be emailed shortly after the deadline letting you know if you have a place and with more details.

Devon Weekend

Update: Due the task for the Saturday being cancelled we spent both days at Jamie’s place. In between the extended breaks we did some hedge-laying along a millstream, built a habitat pile and had bonfire (which we got going despite the wet and very windy conditions). In the evening we played the traditional BUCG game Werewolf. Thanks to Jenny, Jamie’s mum, for having us and cooking us some delicious food including home-grown lamb. This we definitely one of the most fun and relaxed trips.


On Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th March we will be in North Devon for our second annual residential trip. On Saturday we’ll be doing some work on the coast. On Sunday we’ll scrub clearing around a pond and in a valley at Jamie’s, our ex vice-president’s, house on the edge of Exmoor. We’ll also be staying at his house on Saturday night.

The trip will cost £15, this covers the cost of transport, accommodation and food, so it’s a pretty good deal! If you would like to go please email Jess before the deadline of Sunday 22nd March 6:00pm.

This trip is always great fun and is sure to be one of the highlights of the year. It is likely to become oversubscribed as we are limited on places due to seats in the minibus. Therefore names will be out of a hat to decide who gets to attend. As usual you need to be a member to attend.

Laser tag

Update: Much fun was had over two rounds of laser tag – a free-for-all followed by a team game – with mix of panicked hopeful pulls on the triggers and unorthodox tactics. We headed to a nearby pub for food and drink to recoup the spent energy.


We will be playing some laser tag on Wednesday 25th March at 7:30pm at Laser Fusion in Broadmead (we will meet up there). After exhausting ourselves with fun running around trying to shoot each other with lasers in the dark we will most likely have a well earned rest and drink at a pub.

AWT pond trip

Update: It turned out we working on the AWT’s newest site, Bennet’s Patch, along the Portway towards Sea Mills. With both BUCG and AWT (plus some scouts who arrived in the afternoon) we were certainly not short of hands to help line the ponds (which had thankfully been dug by machine) while a few painted a storage container a more camouflaged green. This gave us time to have a wander around the nearby woods in weather which, after a grim looking start, was very fine.


On Sunday 22nd March we will be running a trip with the Avon Wildlife Trust to one of their sites where we will be digging three new wildlife ponds. We will meet at the AWT office (32 Jacob Wells Road, BS8 1DR) at 9:50am (please make sure that you are on time, otherwise we may have to leave without you).

If you fancy getting out of Bristol next weekend to do some conservation work let Jess know by emailing her by 6:00pm on Tuesday 17th March. As per usual if oversubscribed people will be chosen at random. Further details about the day will be sent out shortly after. Note that you do need to be a BUCG member to attend (you can join at our UBU page. It’s only £5 for the year!).