Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Nature Ranger Award

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Nature Ranger Award asingleton Tue, 14/08/2018 - 11:46

Nature Ranger Award

Emma Bradshaw

What is the Nature Ranger Award?

The Nature Ranger award is the highest level Wildlife Watch award you can get.  You can only take part in it if you have completed the Kestrel award.  To complete the Nature Ranger award you will have to study a UK wildlife or conservation topic of your choice and produce a report for Lancashire Wildlife Trust to assess. 

When completed you will receive a certificate signed by Chris Packham, a badge, an icon on your website profile, a mention in Wildlife Watch magazine and a special prize!

You will be sent information about how to take part in the Nature Ranger award when you complete the Kestrel award.

FAQs

Who can take part?

The Nature Ranger award is for children who subscribe to Wildlife Watch through their local Wildlife Trust and who have already completed their Kestrel award. 

Why should I take part?

By taking part we hope members will:

  • Gain a sense of personal achievement and pride in their work
  • Develop new skills and knowledge
  • Have a positive impact on wildlife or the environment
  • Be encouraged to take on projects they might not have done without the incentive of the award scheme
  • Develop a long term commitment to nature conservation
  • Find out about, and develop links with, their local Trust
  • Have fun with their friends or families

How it works

The Nature Ranger award is all about becoming a wildlife expert!  To do this, participants will need to complete a project on a topic of their choice, but it must be on a UK wildlife, habitat or conservation theme. 

Participants must study their chosen topic and work on their project for at least six months. 

Participants must then create a report about their chosen topic.  The report could be done using one of the following methods:

  • Written report
  • Film
  • PowerPoint presentation or website
  • By organising and leading a guided event for friends / school class / other group on the topic.

Participants will then send in their report to their local Wildlife Trust to be assessed.

When the project is complete and has been assessed, participants will receive a badge, a certificate signed by Chris Packham and they will get a mention in Wildlife Watch magazine.

How can I get involved?

Email our Award co-ordinator, Clare Sweeney who will send you over a pack to start your challenge. csweeney@lancswt.org.uk

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Beach School

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Beach School cvarela Fri, 10/08/2018 - 16:00

Beach School

A unique outdoor learning experience for local schools

Beach School is a completely new and unforgettable way for children to immerse themselves in the wonders of the UK's seas. We aim to improve students' knowledge about their local coastal environment by connecting them with nature; opening their eyes to this amazing habitat and inspiring them to care for our coasts.

11% of under 14’s have never visited a British beach

Not only that, but 64% of children play outside less than once a week. With just five minutes of 'green' exercise being proven to improve mental wellbeing, it is important that all children have the opportunity to explore their local coastline.

Find out more

A boy at Beach School leaping down a sand dune on the coast

What is Beach School?

We're taking Forest School to the beach!

Beach School follows the same ethos as Forest School, using the coast as a platform for a whole new learning experience that provides children with the opportunity to explore their natural surroundings in an organised setting.

Shoresearch attendee holding up a shore crab found during the event

Charlotte Varela

Our Beach School vision

People who have easy access to their local coastline often visit on a regular basis, but what about those who cannot easily access a beach or coastal environment?

We believe that every child should experience the wonders of our beautiful British coastlines, so we are removing this barrier and providing children with the opportunity to visit, learn about and fall in love with the beach through inspirational hands-on learning. If the next generation is disconnected from the coast, they will not feel passionately enough to want to conserve and protect it in the future.

A group of children ready for mud dipping on St Annes beach

What happens at Beach School?

Beach School is about educating children through a variety of fun games and activities; raising awareness about their local coastal environment and how they can help to sustain it for future generations. These are just some of the topics we might explore:

  • How to behave sensibly and act responsibly when using the beach
  • Seasons and tides
  • Pressures on the marine environment; including over fishing and marine pollution
  • Species identification and information
  • How marine flora and fauna are adapted to survive in their environment
  • Mini beach cleans
  • Environmental/marine art

Through these activities children will also develop important life skills such as team working, confidence in an outdoor setting and emotional intelligence.

Beach School locations

Our Beach School sessions are delivered by a group of passionate Wildlife Trust team members who are dedicated to enthusing the next generation awe and respect for our seas. They run beach school in three key areas:

Fylde
Merseyside
Cheshire

Interested in Beach School?

Click the button below to visit the Living Seas North West website and find out how to contact our Beach School team.

Get started with Beach School

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Waterdale and Drinkwater Park

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Waterdale and Drinkwater Park cvarela Fri, 10/08/2018 - 10:50

Waterdale and Drinkwater Park

The realm of the kingfisher

Though now disused, the monolithic 13-arch railway viaduct that dominates this part of the Kingfisher Trail is a reminder of the area's former life as a thriving industrial hub. Now, Waterdale and Drinkwater Park is one of Bury’s best greenspaces.

What can you see at Waterdale and Drinkwater Park?

This is one of the best places on the Kingfisher Trail to see kingfishers, which hunt at Damshead Lodge: once part of a series of reservoirs which fed Waterdale Bleach and Dye works (famous for producing the colour Turkey Red). Kestrels, sparrowhawks, buzzards and even peregrine falcons can be seen along the impressive 13 Arches Viaduct.

Now owned and managed by the Forestry Commission, major work has been carried out to stop heavy metals from leaching out of contaminated ground at Waterdale and Drinkwater Park. Thousands of tons of soil have been imported to create a stunning wildflower meadow, while a mixture of deciduous trees were planted. Many of these are managed traditionally by local coppice workers to produce sustainable products. 

The history of Waterdale and Drinkwater Park

Damshead Lodge was dug by hand in the 1780s and features 50-foot deep overflow drain which looks like a submerged mill chimney. The bleachworks were located on the land below the reservoir and stood there until being demolished as part of major landscaping works in the 1970s. This area also once featured the monumental cooling towers of Agecroft Power station and the deep lagoons of Rhodes Farm Sewage Works. 

The site has long been important as a navigational route. Bradley Ford once provided a pack horse route across the river, before the opening of Clifton Aqueduct allowed the Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal to cross here. Less than 50 years later the Manchester to Bury railway line largely superseded the canal and the area had a new icon in the 13 Arches Viaduct. Rather than trains this is now home to regular sightings of the magnificent birds of prey mentioned above.

Know before you go

Find out more about Waterdale here, and Drinkwater Park here, on the Forestry Commission website before you plan your visit.

Access: Park Lane, Whitefield, M45 7QJ, or at the bottom of Buckley Lane, Prestwich, M45 7JZ.
Accessible: Reaching the site from Philips Park involves a long descent into the steep-sided valley. Access from Buckley Lane is along mostly flat, excellent quality paths. 

A portion of the Kingfisher Trail map created by Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Find out more

Explore more sites along the Kingfisher Trail and plan your trip along this fascinating route.

View all sites

Open the Kingfisher Trail map

How you can help

You can help us maintain sites along the Kingfisher Trail (including Waterdale and Drinkwater Park) for people and wildlife by becoming a member, volunteering or making a donation.

Choose one of the options below and protect the wild spaces on your doorstep.

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Ringley Woods

Posted on - In Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Ringley Woods cvarela Fri, 10/08/2018 - 10:20

Ringley Woods

Mark Hamblin/2020VISION

Lose yourself amongst ancient trees

The picturesque little village of Ringley sits alongside the River Irwell, nestled in the shadow of a steep wooded valley where birds of prey swoop silently between the trees.

What can you see in Ringley Woods?

Despite the encroachment of industry, much of Ringley Woods is classed as ancient and home to all the wildlife you would expect to find in an ancient woodland.

Lose yourself amongst towering trees including English oak, ash, birch, alder, elm, beech, willow, sycamore, hawthorn, rowan, holly and hazel. Watch treecreepers and nuthatches scampering up the tree trunks, and great-spotted woodpeckers flitting from branch to branch. Buzzards, sparrowhawks and tawny owls can also be seen, so keep your eyes peeled and your ears pricked!

Don't miss a spring visit to Ringley Woods, when they are resplendent with a cascade of bluebells and the fragrance of wild garlic hangs in the air. 

The history of Ringley Woods

Remnants of Ringley Woods' history can be seen all around. Ringley Bridge spans the River Irwell and is designated as an ancient monument, having provided a crossing since 1677. A pair of stocks stands beside the bridge.

St Saviour’s church holds monuments to the influential Fletcher family, whilst in its grounds an old clock tower is the only reminder of an earlier church building. A plaque on the tower quaintly reads 'Nathan Walworth builded mee ad 1625'. This church was once rebuilt by Charles Barry (of Houses of Parliament fame) but lasted less than thirty years before being demolished and replaced by the current building.

Treecreepers and nuthatches scamper up tree trunks in the peaceful woodland

As with many Kingfisher Trail sites, Ringley Woods has its roots in industry. Until the 1980s this tranquil spot was dominated by the smokestacks and cooling towers of Kearsley Power Station (including the tallest cooling tower in the world). It was also once skirted by a mile-long chain tramway connecting the Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal with Outwood Colliery. It carried coal down the hill, where it would then be dropped directly through a trapdoor in a bridge onto waiting canal boats below.

The Manchester to Bury railway line also ran through the woodland at one time and is now the excellent national cycle route 6.

Know before you go

Access: From behind Horseshoe Pub, Ringley, M26 1FT.
Accessible: Ringley Bridge, stocks and Saint Saviours all accessible. Kingfisher Trail path not suitable for those with limited mobility.

A portion of the Kingfisher Trail map created by Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Find out more

Explore more sites along the Kingfisher Trail and plan your trip along this fascinating route.

View all sites

Open the Kingfisher Trail map

How you can help

You can help us maintain sites along the Kingfisher Trail (including Ringley Woods) for people and wildlife by becoming a member, volunteering or making a donation.

Choose one of the options below and protect the wild spaces on your doorstep.

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Firwood Fold

Posted on - In Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Firwood Fold cvarela Fri, 10/08/2018 - 09:47

Firwood Fold

Mark Hamblin/2020VISION

The peaceful birthplace of Samuel Crompton

Firwood Fold is a beautiful little hamlet by the side of Bradshaw Brook. Once surrounded by industry in the form of bleachworks, today, it is a picturesque and peaceful retreat with a very famous former resident: the inventor Samuel Crompton.

What can you see at Firwood Fold?

Immediately behind Samuel Crompton’s house is The Bunk, a large reservoir left over from the old bleachworks. It was originally fed by a channel connecting it to the large weir on Longsight Park (immediately by the Kingfisher Trail) and now, left to thrive, the area around The Bunk supports a good diversity of plant species.

Look out for the likes of bittersweet, enchanter's nightshade and wood avens under the trees, and lesser celandine, wood anemone and water avens by the waterside. 

The history of Firwood Fold

Firwood Fold is most famous as the birthplace of the inventor, Samuel Crompton, who was born at number 10 in 1753. He actually only lived here until the age of five but these early years living amongst people working with textiles must have seeped into his bones, as twenty years later he invented the famous Spinning Mule. 

His next home, Hall i' th' Wood, is just up the road and is now a museum which is well worth a visit to find out more. The road connecting the two homes bears his name, Crompton Way, and is one of Bolton’s busiest roads, although you wouldn’t know it when on the Kingfisher Trail! If you would rather walk than drive to get there you could follow the Tonge Trail set up by Bolton at Home. This eight-mile circular route overlaps with the Kingfisher Trail along this stretch.

Crompton's family left at the age of five, but those years seeped into his bones

Did you know that the name of this area reflects the older history of the site? The word 'fold' refers to a farmstead and 'Firwood' to a wood. Similarly, the name of the river also reflects this with ‘Bradshaw’ coming from the Old English for a ‘Broad-wood’. The age of the Fold itself can be seen in the fact that number 15 was originally built in the 16th century and is the oldest inhabited house in Bolton. 

To find out more about the history of Firwood Fold please see Bolton Council’s publication titled ‘Firwood Fold Conservation Area’, which is available from their website. You can also find out more from The Friends of Firwood: an active community group dedicated to the site that has its own Facebook group.

Know before you go

Access: Firwood Lane, Bolton, BL2 3AG.
Accessible: Firwood Fold itself is on a gradual slope but is cobbled. The bunk and lodges are not suitable for those with limited mobility.

A portion of the Kingfisher Trail map created by Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Find out more

Explore more sites along the Kingfisher Trail and plan your trip along this fascinating route.

View all sites

Open the Kingfisher Trail map

How you can help

You can help us maintain sites along the Kingfisher Trail (including Firwood Fold) for people and wildlife by becoming a member, volunteering or making a donation.

Choose one of the options below and protect the wild spaces on your doorstep.

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Accessible nature reserves

Posted on - In Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Accessible nature reserves cvarela Thu, 09/08/2018 - 15:21

Accessibility on our nature reserves

Amy Lewis

Access for all

We believe that limited mobility shouldn't mean missing out on wildlife. Many of our reserves have accessible paths and boardwalks, disabled facilities and accessible bird hides, so you can fully immerse yourself in the great outdoors and discover the wonderful wildlife that lives on your doorstep.

A child in a wheelchair visiting an accessible nature reserve

Ade Clarke @ClarkePictures

The natural world should be for everyone

We are working hard to make sure our beautiful reserves can be accessed by everyone.

Find your nearest accessible nature reserve

Not sure where to go for your next nature walk? Plan ahead and find an accessible nature reserve in Lancashire.

Aughton Woods

Sprigs of bluebells in a woodland

Neil Aldridge

A peaceful woodland retreat that is wheelchair accessible but does have some steep paths. Enjoy carpets of bluebells during spring, and keep your eyes peeled for breeding pied flycatchers during summer.

Find out more

Brockholes

Brockholes' floating Visitor Village during spring

Charlotte Varela

A wetland wonder that brims with beautiful birds. Most of the footpaths are level and surfaced, and the kissing gates are accessible for smaller wheelchairs. There is a vehicle access gate next to all kissing gates on surfaced paths - if you use a large mobility vehicle or pushchair you can obtain a key to these gates.

Find out more

Cross Hill Quarry

A tunnel formed by trees at Cross Hill Quarry nature reserve

Most of the footpaths in this mosaic of woodland and meadows are wheelchair-friendly.  Cross Hill Quarry is a haven for orchids, while spring brings migrating warblers, grey wagtails and sand martins.

Find out more

Foxhill Bank

Trees in the middle of a tranquil pond at Foxhill Bank nature reserve

A hidden gem in the heart of Oswaldtwistle. The reserve is wheelchair accessible, but there are some steep steps on circular routes. Jewel-like kingfishers brighten up the brook and dippers bob along the rocks.

Find out more

Mere Sands Wood

Great crested grebes performing their courtship dance with weeds in their mouths

Andrew Parkinson/2020VISION

A tranquil wildlife oasis that is a haven for wildfowl, waders and wildflowers. There are a number of bird hides and the reserve is accessible for wheelchairs. Sparrowhawks, buzzards, great-crested grebes and great-spotted woodpeckers are just a handful of the breeding species.

Find out more

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Commis Chef

Posted on - In Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Commis Chef
Closing date:
HR Wed, 08/08/2018 - 16:16
Salary: National Minimum Wage / Living Wage
Brockholes Nature Reserve has a vacancy for a Commis Chef to join the Restaurant Team. The successful candidate will be required to prepare food in accordance with the set procedures and as directed by the senior kitchen staff.
Contract type: PermanentWorking hours: Full time
Location:

The Commis Chef will work with the kitchen staff to ensure that the catering offer is an integral part of the visitor experience at Brockholes Nature Reserve’s restaurant and the post-holder will assist in developing a reputation for excellent food.

Previous experience of working in a similar position would be an advantage; however this is not essential as full training will be given. The ideal applicant will hold an NVQ level 2 in a food related subject and have pastry experience; they will be passionate about delivering excellent food, will have the ability to work effectively under pressure and should be flexible with the ability to respond to changing situations.

This post is for 37.5 hours per week. You will be required to work regular early mornings, evenings and weekends to meet the needs of the business.

A full job description can be found below.

To apply for this position, please send your CV to Tom via email here

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Nature Recovery Network

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Nature Recovery Network cvarela Wed, 08/08/2018 - 15:55

Mapping a Nature Recovery Network

Luke Massey/2020VISION

We're influencing policies to help wildlife thrive

We’re working to influence the policies that set the rules that govern where and how development happens, and where public payments for nature go.

We make the case upward to national Government to ensure local planning authorities have the right tools available to set strong policies to protect, restore and enhance wildlife; and that any public payments to farmers, foresters and other landowners and managers are used to best effect for nature’s recovery.

We work at a local level to provide advice and work on the ground to help this happen, and keep happening across Lancashire, Greater Manchester and North Merseyside, and in our Irish Sea.

Locally and nationally, we’re working with others to gather evidence to promote the planning and mapping of a Nature Recovery Network on land to guide development to areas that are less important for nature, and to target funding and action to where it will best help nature to recover and thrive. Already some networks are mapped in Lancashire and in the Liverpool City region, and work is well underway for Greater Manchester.

Two scientists standing in a river and measuring water quality

Rob Jordan/2020VISION

Protecting wildlife on your doorstep

We’re working to influence planning policies in the Local Plans that guide development in each of the 26 local planning authorities across our area, as well as in the spatial frameworks for the Greater Manchester & Liverpool City Region, and in the Marine Spatial Plan for the Irish Sea off northwest England.  

We want to:

  • Ensure that greenspace in new development on land delivers an overall improvement for nature and protects and expands local populations of highly threatened species.
  • Ensure that nature has a chance to recover on the bed of the Irish Sea and in the waters above, whilst integrating necessary development at sea.

Find out more about our Nature Recovery Networks

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Thank You for joining the Lancashire Wildlife Trust

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Thank You for joining the Lancashire Wildlife Trust asingleton Wed, 08/08/2018 - 11:48

THANK YOU FOR JOINING THE LANCASHIRE WILDLIFE TRUST

Tom Hibbert

Your membership means so much to the local wildlife

By becoming a member you are helping us monitor Lancashire brown hare populations records and plan future conservation work. You are helping make British seas safer and cleaner for basking sharks. And you are helping us bring native species back from the brink of extinction.

Thank you so much!

Luke Massey/2020VISION

Source Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Thank You for donating to the Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Posted on - In Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Thank You for donating to the Lancashire Wildlife Trust asingleton Wed, 08/08/2018 - 11:48

THANK YOU FOR DONATING TO THE LANCASHIRE WILDLIFE TRUST

Alexander Mustard/2020VISION

Your donation will make a great difference to the wildlife in your area

Thank you so much!

Basking Shark by JP Trenque