Posted by: Claire Hannington | September 3, 2014

Best day of my life!

That’s a quote from one of the children who came to our 50 things Family Woodland Funday on Saturday at Cwm Ivy, to end what was quite a fun but busy August.

It started with the Saturday group working alongside Kathryn clearing bracken on Cwm Ivy Tor, whilst I was lounging around at the Lodge enjoying my birthday – thanks to John one of our volunteers who left this wonderful message on Rhossili beach.


Thanks to all the volunteers who came down to wish me birthday greetings – we did it the Gower NT way – tea and cake!

Ok ok so a little alcohol may have been consumed later on in the day !


Anyway back in work (cough!) we took our volunteers on a trip to Tredegar House and Dyffryn Gardens – the 2 newest acquisitions for the NT in South Wales.

We had a lovely warm welcome from the staff on both days and we all enjoyed…more tea and cake!



So…back in work we did a bit of dry stone walling and cleared around the trees in the orchard. Then we… had a ball at the Mumbles Raft Race!

You can catch all the news about our raft in our other posts.

We then had a group of Duke of Edinburgh students join us for a week from Olchfa School. The girls were great and worked really hard. Along with our regular volunteers they painted refugia mats, cleared bracken on the Warren, pulled ragwort at Pennard, cleared the sides of the track at Cwm Ivy, and litter picked Rhossili beach. More importantly they had fun including wheelbarrow races in the woodyard!D of E


That week we also replaced the top gate post at Cwm Ivy as the old one had rotten and the gate was becoming increasing difficult to open.

And we put in a new bench at Pennard on West Cliff – much to the appreciation of local residents. We of course had to try it out.

146 rhydian claire

The following week saw Kirsteen and Rhydian join Mark Barber from ARC putting out more refugia mats at Nicholaston. We are currently in the process of putting lots more out to aid monitoring of reptiles in the future. We held a reptile training day for all our volunteers which was well attended. They went to Nicholaston in the afternoon to check on the mats and managed to see slow worms, lizards and adders, thanks to Mark and his keen eye.

We also spent a couple of days admiring the view from Llanmadoc Hill – oh and cutting the bracken and some gorse whilst we there!

We have also cleared the bracken and gorse regrowth from old Castle Camp at Rhossili.

Kirsteen and Rhydian have been taking out the volunteers for me quite a bit and are doing a superb job. They have both settled in really well. It gives me the opportunity to spend time in the office catching up and doing things like this…er not quite sure if that’s a good thing..the sun is shining…I’m sure I need to be doing something out there!

We sadly had to say goodbye to 2 of our regular volunteers Bas and Mary Taylor who have left us to return to the Midlands. We wish them well and have been assured we will be seeing them again. Of course we had a bit of a do for them and …had tea and cake!!!

To end the month, as I mentioned at the start, we had our Family Woodland Funday at Cwm Ivy. The weather was great and the atmosphere fantastic. Plenty of kids enjoyed activities ably facilitated by some of our regular volunteers and a group on a working holiday weekend.

photo 4

The Working Holiday arrived on the Friday night and stayed in the Lodge. After helping with the woodland day on the Saturday they spent Sunday morning clearing litter from Whiteford Beach. A lovely group of people doing some really worthwhile work and enjoying a weekend on Glorious Gower.

Working holiday

A big, huge, enormous thank you to all our volunteers who work so hard keeping Gower special. Now my next job this afternoon is to send an email out to them all with this year’s volunteer survey…



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