Author: Christine Gorton Page 1 of 5

LAST CHANCE TO SAVE GLOUCESTERSHIRE’S WILD PLACES

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust this year launched their most ambitious appeal yet. ‘Save Our Special Places’ calls for the county’s residents to help save local wild places in very real danger of destruction.

The charity, which places caring for Gloucestershire’s wildlife at the heart of everything it does, began the new fundraising campaign in the summer to urge people to donate what they can so that vital conservation work can continue.

Struck by the threat of losing much-loved green spaces, and keen to play their part for the wildlife of the county, Grundon Waste Management have just donated £6,000 to the appeal’s cause.

Anthony Foxlee-Brown, Head of Marketing and Communications at Grundon, said: “This is such an important campaign that we wanted to give it substantial support. Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust is the only county-wide organisation with the ability, perspective, knowledge and experience to fight for the county’s special places, without which this region would be much the poorer.”

Threats faced on a daily basis by Gloucestershire’s picturesque countryside includes intensive agriculture, aggressive urbanisation, climate change and pollution. Wide open grassy spaces and leafy green woodlands, home to childhood memories of kite flying, tree-climbing and long family walks, are being ruined. Treasured creatures that call the county home, such as hedgehogs, barn owls and bumblebees, are struggling to survive and could be lost forever.

The UK is now one of the most nature-depleted countries in the world. Over the past 70 years, 56% of plants, animals, insects and fungi have declined, and 1 in 10 species are threatened by extinction.

“The way we live our lives is sending shock waves through the natural world around us. We already know how fragile the environment can be. Now we’re seeing the true reality of it. Will your childhood wood be here in twenty years’ time? In ten? At the moment, I couldn’t guarantee it” comments Roger Mortlock, Chief Executive of Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust.

However, the Trust are fighting back, and hope to encourage the people of Gloucestershire to join them in protecting the county’s wild places.

Every day staff and volunteers carry out painstaking work to protect wildlife for the future, not just across the land the Trust cares for, but by working in partnership with landowners and within urban areas. Whether it’s building hedgehog routes in local towns or removing invasive plant species which threaten to spread and smother native plants, it all encourages wildlife to thrive.

There’s still time to make a difference; the appeal will be running until the end of December. Donations could help to save the county’s wild places from the brink of disaster. Even the smallest donation could help to fund gloves and tools for teams of conservation volunteers, activities to help local children re-connect with the outside world and learn how they can help to care for the environment, as well as bird boxes to provide a home for declining species like barn owls. To find out more about the appeal and to donate, visit www.gloucestershirewildlifetrust.co.uk/saveourspecialplaces

Prize Giving Evening at the Cotswold School

We held our annual Prize Giving Evening on Thursday 12th September 2019 and we welcomed Mark Cummings, as our guest speaker.

Speech Day Team

Mark Cummings is on BBC Radio Gloucestershire every weekday morning bringing a lively, informative and entertaining mix of news, sport and chat to the airwaves. He interviewed staff prior to the event and then offered a fun and interactive ‘hands-up’ question time to the audience! To all the students who received an award—WELL DONE! Of special note are the following:

· Callum Woolley who was the recipient of the new Work Experience Award, sponsored by

Midcounties Co-operative.

· Barney Hotten who was awarded the Ann Holland Award for outstanding achievement at GCSE.

· Emma Parker who received the Gaynor Didcote Prize for her wonderful A Level results. All should

Rachel Godfrey

be proud of their awards.

It was also a privilege that the School honoured Rachel Godfrey with an Exceptional Contribution Award in recognition of her years of service to the school PTA. Music was a big part of the evening with Reuben West, Amara Bochmann and Alba Espallardo Esteban providing the musical items for us. Staff, students and parents then enjoyed a delicious buffet courtesy of the catering team.

Cotswold School Open Day

Sister Act

VOLUNTEER WITH GIRLGUIDING

Girlguiding is the leading charity for girls and young women in the UK, with over 500,000 members.

Thanks to the dedication and support of over 100,000 amazing volunteers, we are active in every part of the UK, giving girls and young women a space where they can be themselves, have fun, build brilliant friendships, gain valuable life skills and make a positive difference to their lives and their communities.

We build girl’s confidence and raise their aspirations. We give them the chance to discover their full potential and encourage them to be a powerful force for good.

We give them a space to have fun.

We run Rainbows (5-7 yrs), Brownies (7-10 yrs), Guides (10-14 yrs) and Rangers (14-18 yrs)

Interested in Volunteering ?

There are a myriad of ways you can get involved.

Our volunteering opportunities can fit around your skills, commitments and interests. You don’t need to have been involved in Guiding before to make a big difference and find a role that’s perfect for you.

What Volunteering is All About

Volunteering with us isn’t just about campfires and helping girls to get their next badge – although those are special moments that we all share.

It’s about empowering girls and giving them new experiences.

It’s about being a role model and helping girls to realise their full potential.

It’s sharing and developing your skills.

VOLUNTEER AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Your professional and personal experience, a specific skill or simply your enthusiasm – you have so much to share with girls and young women in Guiding.

It’s time to get involved.

Register your interest at www.girlguiding.org.uk

Or find out more at cotswoldn@girlguidingglos.org.uk

Christmas Fayre

Bourton School of Gymnastics Club Latest News

After a hardworking summer, Gymnasts at The Gym Centre took part in the Gloucestershire Apparatus Levels Championships on 15th September 2019 at Fromeside Gymnastics Club. It was a tough day with a high level of competition. The Gym Centre came away with some fantastic results with 3 gymnasts who started training at Bourton placing well!

Jessica Havill placed 5th in the Level 5 Juniors, along with her teammate Sophie Havill who placed 1st! Hannah Rowe also placed 1st in the Level 5 Senior section.

As a result of the competition, Martin and Kerwen Collett are proud to announce that both Sophie Havill and Hannah Rowe will be representing their county in a coming competition in October! Sophie will be part of the Level 5 Under 11 team along with her teammate Tallulah Cole, and Hannah Rowe will be representing Level 5 Over 11s.

We are extremely excited to see what the next few months hold for the gymnasts and for us as a club! Watch this space to find out happens next!

Did you know we run an after school club at The Cotswold School for pupils? Get in touch now to find out more – gnortoncsg@outlook.com.

Autumn, a time of abundance and harvest

Leaving what we can for nature

With autumn now upon us the weather is on the turn. The days are getting shorter and our farmers are busily bringing in the last of the pre-winter harvests.

Nature too is taking advantage of an abundance of food in our hedgerows and fields to prepare for the colder months ahead.

Creatures such as the tiny Harvest mouse, the Dormouse, the Wood Mouse as well as larger mammals such as the Grey Squirrel are all busy gathering and storing what they can for the leaner winter months and Hedgehogs are feeding up in preparation for hibernation. Many of our native bird species are filling up on the last of this year’s insects and starting to turn their attention to other food sources too.

For all these creatures, great and small, the ‘fruit’ that fall from our native trees, such as the Hazel or the Beach and the berries that are found in our hedgerow are a hugely important resource. The Hawthorn with its characteristic red berries, the Blackthorn with its deep blue sloes and the Elderflower with and its ruby red clusters of tiny fruit are all essential food sources.

Leaving hedgerow uncut where it is possible to do so, provides an over-wintering pantry for wildlife for this year. It also has the advantage of providing early blossom for pollinators come the spring. Remembering as well, that where we cut the hedges we will see no blossom and no berries the coming year.

As we cut the hedgerow and neaten up our farms, parks and gardens, we are actually depriving many creatures of the essential food they need to survive.  We also fail to help ourselves by reducing the number of pollinating insects that we will see come the spring to pollinate the crops in our fields.

Of great importance too are the field margins that some farmers are kind enough to leave unsprayed and unploughed. These contain wildflowers and grasses that, when they go to seed, provide sustenance for mammals, birds and insects alike.

Di Wheatley

Bourton Tennis Club

Junior tennis is now in full swing again after the summer hols with Junior Club Night on Thursdays from 6pm open to all Junior members free of charge to come along and have some fun on court. Tennis lessons with coach James Hilltout are also back on with record numbers of Juniors participating in these sessions. It’s great to see so many of the Bourton youngsters outdoors, active, and enjoying tennis. New members are welcome anytime! Please check the website for more details: www.bourtontennisclub.org 

The under 8s Gloucestershire County Championships took place on Aug 31st at Oxstalls where promising young player, William Souch, entered the singles for the first time reaching the semi-finals. Bourton Tennis Club coached Arthur Hanson also reached the semi-finals in the under 12s doubles. Congratulations to both for a superb effort!

William Souch

And finally for the adults out there wanting to stay/get fit, please do come along to the Cardio tennis sessions on Thursdays from 6:30-7:30. These anaerobic workouts really get you moving, get your hand-eye coordination going, and help improve your tennis game too. Non-members welcome! More info on the website.

See you on court!

Alex Peyton

St. Chad’s Sanctuary

Kindness to St Chad’s Sanctuary – thank you Bourton!

We have had lovely feedback from the refugees and volunteers from St Chad’s Sanctuary project in Birmingham. Their visit to Cold Aston, Hawling and Bourton in July really lifted their spirits and it warmed their hearts- to be welcomed and valued and have time to connect with friendly British people and learn abut our rural areas and nature. Some as victims of torture were frail and subdued but got real pleasure from being able to relax and take part in new positive experiences. By luck the weather was tropical and so they were able to enjoy visiting local homes and gardens and just sit and chat in the sunshine.

Groups then enjoyed visits to Greystones wildlife reserve, Birdland and Hawling seeing sheep farming at first hand. Friendly local people helped them enjoy and understand these beautiful places. They were so touched to receive a heartfelt warm welcome and experience of genuine British hospitality. Thanks to members of the community from many surrounding villages and help from the village Co-op store, (I’ve not seen so many scones in a long time!!) we all enjoyed a tremendous tea at the Bourton Baptist church. All of us who took part from Bourton and nearby villages, gained immeasurably from having the chance to meet and connect with brave and interesting people from over 20 countries. Ordinary people like us who have gone through things we hope we never have to experience.

Thanks also to everyone who helped us fill the “Big yellow Box with kindness”, so many times. Warm coats, walking shoes and boots, toiletries, trousers, jumpers, dresses, under wear, and games and things for children to enjoy were all transported back on their coach.

Thank you to everyone who took part and helped behind the scenes.

Diana Ray

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