After a little pause for contemplation it’s been a busy week for environmental activity chez FoGBV and an opportunity to put together a picture of what we want to do and how to achieve it.

Firstly, I think we have established that none of us really relish the prospect of lots of admin or formality.  Let me know if you do -there’s a place here for you!!  But, happily, we have the reassuring presence of the Aire Rivers Trust to help us. They are a well-organised charity with a wealth of experience and a network of co-workers whose aims are well aligned with ours in many respects (albeit focussed on the waterways).

Aire Rivers Trust

Secondly, we are becoming aware of the diversity of amazing environmental organisations locally. Including…

Bradford Urban Wildlife Group

Bradford Environmental Action Trust

Bradford Ornithological Group

Baildon Swift Group

Friends of the Earth Baildon

Sitting in on the meeting of the Friends of Bradford Becks (affiliates of the Aire Rivers Trust) this week we were very impressed with their effectiveness in improving the watery environment across the other side of the Aire from our patch.  Much to be learned from them.

On Thursday we convened our own little assembly in Baildon with ten pioneering attendees weighing in.  We are very grateful to Nick Milsom from Aire Rivers for being there.  Outcomes in brief summary:

  • We are currently resolved to remain a humble contact list and group of spontaneous conspirators rather than a more formal membership association with written constitution etc.
  • We can seek to collaborate with bigger organisations where necessary: including those listed above and also, importantly, Baildon Town Council and Bradford Countryside Service.
  • We will produce a digitised map of the valley accessible to all of us which can be annotated by us with points of interest, projects on the go and things needing attention.
  • We will produce an information board for a central site at Tong Park dam (with permission of the owners) focusing on the wildlife, human history of the valley, access points and giving contact details for ourselves to promote interest and generate new particpants. Plus smaller notices at main access points (Low Springs, Ladderbanks Lane, Hawksworth Lane footpath, Lonk House Lane).  We perhaps need a little logo too.
  • Recording of fauna and flora in the area will be an ongoing project over the years.
  • We will continue with ongoing projects: bird and bat boxes, litter collection and bins, footpath maintenance, pollution monitoring, wildlife recording and friendly overtures to the various landowners with a view to opening up new avenues of environmental enhancement where mutually advantageous.

Onwards and upwards! As ever, any feedback more than welcome.

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