Help to conserve and enhance the Cotswolds

Below are a range of volunteering projects organised by the Cotswolds Conservation Board that should help you find the type of volunteer work that you are looking for:

Cotswold Voluntary Wardens

The Cotswold Voluntary Wardens were established in 1968 and have continued to grow into the 300  strong membership of  today.  Anyone can join, all you need is enthusiasm for the Cotswolds and a willingness to offer your time and skills to help keep the Cotswolds special.

The Cotswold Wardens form part of the wider Cotswolds Conservation Board and the volunteer opportunities are variable.  There is something for everyone, from walling to walks and talks to tree planting.

Would you like to try out one of these activities?

  • Working Parties – help conserve and enhance the AONB, taking part in a range of projects from drystone walling, hedge laying, and tree planting to installing kissing gates and pond restoration.
  • Parish wardening – Work with parish councils, farmers and local residents to help keep footpaths open and identify local features in need of restoration.
  • Guided Walks – Lead a guided walk, promoting the Cotswolds AONB to a wider audience.
  • Education – Help with school assemblies and days out exploring the Cotswolds
  • Shows and talks -Promote the value of the Cotswolds.

In return for your commitment, we offer support, training, equipment, travel expenses and a sense of achievement.

Interested?  Then please contact us…

If you are interested in joining then please complete the application form which can be downloaded here but please take the time to look at further details of what is involved within the Essential Guide or alternatively email info@cotswoldsaonb.org.uk or telephone 01451 862000.

Save our Magnificent Meadows

The Cotswolds Conservation Board is one of the partners with this national project working with local communities to raise awareness of the importance of species-rich grassland through a range of events, open days and guided walks for the public.

Volunteers are being recruited to help with practical habitat management and botanical surveying, as well as recruiting ‘Community Champions’.  Contact Mark Connelly, mark.connelly@cotswoldsaonb.org.uk

Other Volunteering Opportunities in the Cotswolds AONB

Stroud Valleys Project
The project has a long track record of working with volunteers on environmental initiatives around Stroud. Visit www.StroudValleysProject.org

The Friends of Leckhampton Hill and Charlton Kings Common (FOLK) 
FOLK was formed in the year 2000 to represent local interest in the conservation, recreation, history & land management of this Site of Special Scientific Interest. They have regular conservation work parties on the second Thursday and fourth Sunday of every month. www.leckhamptonhill.org.uk

The Conservation Volunteers
Volunteering opportunities with TCV include the midweek conservation group, training in conservation skills (e.g. drystone walling), tree warden training, and assistance for community groups. For further information visit www.tcv.org.uk

Gloucester Vale Conservation Volunteers
GVCV carry out practical conservation projects throughout Gloucestershire such as hedgelaying, drystone walling and construction work. Visit www.gvcv.org.uk

Painswick Beacon Conservation Group
The Conservation Group exists to promote the interests of precious plants and wildlife on the Beacon. This includes birds, butterflies, orchids and grasses, and unexpected plants like junipers. Please call the Work Party Organiser Paul Baxter on 07971 633242 or see their Facebook page for more details.

Stinchcombe Hill Conservation Group
The group promotes the history, archaeology, geology and nature conservation of the site. Volunteers are mainly from the surrounding parishes and always need more help. Visit www.stinchcombehill.org.uk, email stinchcombehill@rrmail.com or call 07729 481728.

Ramblers Association
The Ramblers’ Association welcome volunteers to lead walks, carry out practical footpath protection work including clearing undergrowth and overgrowth, repair stiles and bridges and to monitor planning applications that include public rights of way. For further details of a local opportunity contact www.ramblers.org.uk or your local group.

Royal Society of the Protection of Birds
The RSPB works for a healthy environment rich in birds and wildlife. It depends on the support and generosity of others to make a difference. You too can join over 9,000 volunteers in helping the RSPB with campaigns, raising awareness at local events, fundraising, farmland bird survey work, planting reeds, feeding garden birds and carrying out garden bird surveys. You do not need to be a bird expert to be involved. Please see the RSPB website for more information: www.rspb.org.uk/volunteering.

The National Trust
Looking for an exciting and interesting way to make a difference in conserving the environment and the UK’s heritage? Whatever your interests or skills, we would love to hear from you. From gardeners to stewards there are so many ways to help the Trust. Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk

The Wildlife Trusts
The Wildlife Trusts are the largest grouping of charitable organisations in the UK concerned with the conservation of the UK’s natural world. Contact: admin@wiltshirewildlife.org.uk, admin@warkswt.cix.co.uk or bbowt@cix.co.uk.

The Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust
The GWT is a county-based charity working to secure a better future for the wildlife of Gloucestershire. There are many ways you can help the trust in its mission – by joining as a member & by helping out with various voluntary tasks. Without the support of members & volunteers the trust cannot carry out its vital work to protect the wildlife & countryside of the county.  Visit the website www.gloucestershirewildlifetrust.co.uk

Worcestershire Wildlife Trust
The Broadway Gravel Pit nature reserve lies within the Cotswolds AONB. Volunteers meet regularly to look after the reserve and monitor its wildlife. Visit www.worcswildlifetrust.co.uk

The Wychwood Project
The Wychwood Project works with local communities to conserve and restore the landscape and habitats within the former Royal Hunting Forest of Wychwood. Volunteers can join our practical conservation tasks, training courses, help with fundraising,publicity or walks, talks and events. For more details please contact Wychwood Project Manager Tel: 01993 814143 e-mail: wychwood@oxfordshire.gov.uk, website: www.wychwoodproject.org