Welcome to the news from the Trust
We are delighted to have received a grant of £10,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund which will go towards repairing and replacing the access infrastructure of steps and boardwalks that we are responsible for throughout the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site. Like many charitable organisations, the impact of Covid -19 has had an impact on our finances and our ability to carry out necessary work.
Now more than ever, access to the countryside and local green space is of vital importance. The pandemic has made many of us all the more aware of how much we value and rely on outdoor spaces to support our health and well-being. The funding made possible by National Lottery players was awarded through The National Lottery Heritage Fund’s Heritage Emergency Fund. We are very grateful that The National Lottery Heritage Fund is supporting us at this crucial time.
Now more than ever access to the countryside is of vital importance. Since the lockdown began in March we have seen an increased use of all our sites by the local and surrounding communities of Ironbridge Gorge. As a charity we have installed over £250k of access infrastructure to facilitate peoples’ enjoyment of our sites. Unfortunately, in places our timber steps and boardwalks are rotting more quickly than anticipated, potentially because timber is no longer pressure treated with copper chrome arsenic (CCA). Whilst CCAs replacement is better for the environment, it does not produce timber that is as durable. Furthermore, some of our sites have suffered from severe flooding which has likely contributed to the steps accelerated deterioration. We need your support to raise additional funds to replace and repair some of the worst steps. For more information please click on the link below to our Just Giving donations page.
Today marks the start of Volunteers’ Week. We can’t celebrate quite the same this year, but we still want to say a huge thank you for the great work that our volunteers do. Over 3,000 volunteer hours have been given in the last 12 months. The Volunteer Programme has been running from 2006 and has gone from strength to strength. Some volunteers have been with us for over 10 years! Our volunteers help in a variety of practical conservation tasks from hedgelaying to step building and scrub clearance. We also have a group of volunteers who help us manage our flock of rare breed Soay sheep. We couldn’t manage to do all the jobs we do without the help of our volunteers, so it is fantastic to have the opportunity to say ‘Thank you’.
Sadly nearly all of Britain’s wildflower meadows have disappeared as farming practices have changed and towns and villages have expanded, swallowing up many old flower rich meadows. As a conservation charity, Severn Gorge Countryside Trust has worked hard to maintain the precious species rich habitats it manages. The wild flowers are starting to emerge in the meadows at Ropewalk and Wilderness and soon will be a blaze of colour and full of insect life. To help you identify some of the species that grow in the meadows we have labelled some photos of flowers we discovered on a recent walk.
During the lockdown period, staff have been carrying out necessary health and safety checks on our sites, but it has also given them the opportunity to take some videos to explain more about the ecology, geology and archaeology of the landscape. We are gradually uploading them to the website but you can view them by going to ‘Places to Visit’
If you are not able to visit the sites in person at the moment you can visit them virtually and decide which ones you would like to explore as soon as you are able.
With the unprecedented coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, we are all in a very challenging and uncertain time.
The health and safety of our staff, volunteers and the greater community is paramount and in light of current Government advice that there will still be a big risk from Covid -19 until a vaccine can be found and mass produced, the Trust has made the difficult decision to cancel the Outdoor Leaning Programme Workshops booked for 2020.
Our fantastic tutors have confirmed that they will be happy to run the workshops at a later date and we are very grateful for their support.
If you do have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact the Trust at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01952 433880