At the end of these sessions Chiltern Rangers engaged with 157 young people and 90 adult volunteers who contributed 371 hours of volunteering on four sites in the South West Chilterns. We worked with two schools new to Chiltern Rangers as well as Bucks Young Carers and are grateful for the support of Butterfly Conservation, the Woodland Trust, BBOWT and Lord Parmoor.

Three of the sites were new to Chiltern Rangers and to volunteers working on them for the benefit of people and wildlife. Furthermore Chiltern Rangers had not worked at Munces Wood for some time.

We worked on a variety of habitats including rare chalk grassland, woodland and built up areas. Volunteers carried out a wide variety of tasks in line with the management that these habitats needed.

October 2018 Holy Trinity Marlow CE School Year 4 Junior Ranger Day Scallop Making Day at the Woodland Trust’s Munces Wood

The school paid for a coach to shuttle two groups of 45 to do important work cutting scallops alongside paths cutting back ash suffering from die back giving a chance for other tree species to grow back and the ground flora to re-emerge to help ‘Keep Bucks Buzzing’. Local walkers gave us very positive feedback when they saw the work.

Year 4 had a great time with the Chiltern Rangers in Munces Wood and Kimber’s Copse in Marlow Bottom on Monday. The children learned all about the different plant life and then helped the rangers cut back the trees and foliage to support the natural habitat. Teamwork and cooperation were also vital skills developed during the morning. Our thanks go to Mr Stack and the Chiltern Rangers for organising the morning and to the staff who accompanied the children.

Holy Trinity Marlow CE School

October 2018 Bucks Young Carers Half Term Junior Rangers at BBOWT’s Hog and Hollowhill Wood

We worked with a small group of Bucks Young Carers, their leaders and two of our vulnerable Under 25 volunteers to cut down invasive non-native laurel. The young people were brilliant and worked enthusiastically and we received fantastic feedback from BBOWT’s Bucks Reserve Manager, Mark Vallance

Just to let you know I popped out to Hog and Hollowhill today and was impressed by the work you and your guys did.

Mark Vallance

BBOWT’s Bucks Reserve Manager

December 2018 West Wycombe School Walled Garden and Allotment Areas Development Launch Junior Ranger Day

Thank you for a little extra funding that enabled us to deliver an enhanced session with the school who approached us in mid-November. The school has no school field and their students have only had a tarmac playground to play and learn in outdoors up to now. Chiltern Rangers were able to design and plan two unused wild areas of the school with a view to making them accessible to students and attractive habitat for wildlife.

LAF funding enabled us to start the process of restoring these areas.

We spent a day working with their Year 5 and 4 students helping us to cut, rake and coppice the allotment/coppice/orchard area and to develop their walled garden cutting, raking, building a composting heap system, planting 50 conservation hedgerow saplings, making a mini log meeting circle and clearing out 10 bags of rubbish.

We made a great start with lots more to be done in the future as funding allows.  See the before and after images below.

December 2018 Christmas Community Scrub Cut at Lord Parmoor’s Strawberry Bank

We were particularly excited to identify this beautiful site with the support of Butterfly Conservation. It is a special, rare chalk grassland site full of flora and butterflies which is at risk of being lost to scrubby secondary woodland if work is not done to cut the scrub back. A dedicated team of Butterfly Conservation and Chiltern Rangers Volunteers braved the steep slopes and cut back 600 square metres of scrub. We hope to visit there in the summer to see the impact and that patch of Chalk Grassland buzzing with life!

A huge thank you to Bucks County Council for funding our South West Chilterns Local Area Forum (LAF) projects and thank you to all our partners for their help in making these projects happen.