Bideford Buzz

Welcome to the  on-line edition of the Community Newsletter for Bideford   and adjoining towns, villages, and rural area.

‘Bideford Buzz’ is produced  by a team of volunteers and relies on our local community for articles.   If you are interested in supporting this newsletter we’ll be glad to hear from you.

You can submit your article on disc or by e-mail.    However, ‘snail mail’ is equally acceptable. Material for publication should reach us during the month preceding the month of publication.

Editor – Rose Arno (Bideford Buzz).        

Telephone 07929-976120, or E-mail: [email protected]

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An update on BSG’s woodland project.

A couple of weeks ago we were able to do some clearing work on the woodland site next to the skate park, with help from Rose Roberts, the ranger from the Burrows. The help Rose had arranged was amazing!

Many thanks to Rose and the students from Petroc, who are studying environmental issues, who came and worked so hard. We filled 6 dumpy bags with grass, nettles, weeds and brambles. It’s been a challenge to get volunteers to help so far, covid and the weather haven’t helped. We have only lost one tree out of the 22 we planted, which is good news. They are all native trees.

If you would like to visit the site or offer some help, please get in touch.

Above are some pictures of the students working hard for the community.

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Sign up for ‘RUN Barnstaple’, 29th September.

www.chsw.org.uk/runbarnstaple

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Online safety workshops, 19th March.

Barstaple Library are delighted to partner with Lloyds Bank Academy https://www.lloydsbankacademy.co.uk/to bring you two FREE Staying Safe Online workshops at Barnstaple Library on Tuesday 19th March at 10.30 or 12.30.

Learn how to spot scams, reduce the risk of being targeted and what action to take if you think you’ve been scammed.

Advance booking required. Book at the library, or call 01271 318782.

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Jumble sale, 16th March.

Jumble Sale

at Instow Village Hall on Saturday 16th March, starting at 2pm.

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SS “Freshspring” – free open day, 17th March.

Bideford Steamship to Open for Free for Lottery Open Day.

A historic one-of-a-kind steamship based in Bideford is to open for FREE for one day only in March, to say thank you to the Lottery players who have made so much of their restoration work possible.

Visitors can claim their free entry to the ship by presenting their lottery ticket or scratch card on Sunday 17th March from 11am – 4pm. Also onboard that day will be their popular VR experience, live music provided by Bideford Folk Club, morse code experts, a face painter, a cake sale, a teddy bear hunt and volunteers keen to assist visitors around the ship.

The Steamship Freshspring is the only surviving example of the 14 Fresh class water carriers built by Lytham Shipbuilding and Engineering Co for the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. She is recognised as being a vessel of National Importance and appears on the register of Historic Ships. Her duty was to replenish Naval ships with fresh water for use in boilers and also acted as a fire tender and salvage vessel when required.

Run by volunteers, the steamship has been a hive of activity over the months with restoration projects, community engagement and private visits. The volunteers are now busy making final preparations for the new season.

Anyone without a lottery ticket will be able to access the ship by paying the usual entry price. (Under 16 years old free)

The ship will then officially open for the season, every Sunday between 7th April and the end of October.

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Shipping notes No. 227 (February).

Bideford Quay.

No shipping this month. However, the Oldenburg had to return to Sharpness on the 8th.

Appledore.

Quorn and Atherstone still at shipyard.

Yelland Quay.

No shipping.

Bristol Channel Observations.

1/2 at 09.01 vehicle carrier Victorious Ace, 18,396 tons d.w., owners White Bear Maritime Ltd Japan, inward bound for Portbury.

2/2 at 16.17 tanker Al Adailiah, 48,578 tons d.w., owners Kuwait Oil Tanker Co Kuwait, outward from Portbury having sailed at 10.21. At 16.21 carrier Tugela, 28,837 tons d.w., owners Wallenius Wilhelmsem Sweden and Norway, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again 06.33 4th outward bound having sailed from Portbury at 23.13 3rd.)

4/2 At 05.31 vehicle carrier Neptune Aegli, 6,580 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Co Ltd Greece, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 07.24 6th outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 02.30).

6/2 at 11.25 cargo vessel Barbara-B, 5,335 tons d.w., owners NH Shipping GMBH & Co KG Germany, inward bound for Avonmouth .

7/2 at 17.13 vehicle carrier Coral Leader, 10,859 tons d.w., owners Kujyukuri Maritima SA Norway, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 11.56.

10/2 at 13.51 cargo vessel Vertom Tomma, 7,281 tons d.w., owners Vertom Tomma B.V Netherlands, inward bound for Avonmouth.

11/2 at 05.37 vehicle carrier RCC Passion, 11,196 d.w., owners Passion Ray Ltd Isle of Man, inward bound for Portbury. At 09.30 ro-ro vessel City of Hamburg, 3,546 tons d.w., Owners Airbus SAS France, inward bound for Portbury. At 09.38 bulk carrier Federal Clyde, 35,464 tons d.w., owners Federal Oceans Ltd Canada, outward bound from Cardiff having sailed at 17.46 8th.

12/2 at 09.59 cargo vessel Frederick, 4,580 tons d.w., owners Frederik Hermann Lohmann Germany, inward bound for Newport. At 16.14 vehicle carrier Auto Energy, 16,988 tons d.w., owners Uniperssoal Madeira, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again 14th at 16.35 outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 12.31). At 16.18 tug Bestla, 112tons d.w., owners Hanstollen Denmark, inward bound for Newport.

15/2 at 05.46 vehicle carrier Freesia Leader, 19,514 tons d.w., owners Kamaishi Maritima SA Singapore, inward bound for Portbury.

16.2.24 at 12.01 hrs bulk carrier Patroklos, 81,149 tons d.w., owners Sea 231 Leasing Co Ltd Greece, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 08.01.

17/2 at 14.08 vehicle carrier Mermaid Ace, 18,828 tons d.w., owners Prosper World Marine Co Ltd Japan, inward bound for Portbury. At 12.27 ro-ro vessel Eurocargo Livorno, 10,780 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Euromed SPA Italy, inward bound for Portbury.

18/2 at 05.29 vehicle carrier Pleiades Spirit, 17,424 tons d.w., owners Raccoon Navigation Inc Japan, inward bound for Portbury.

19/2 at 05.45 vehicle carrier Auto Achieve, owners Uniperssoal Madeira, inward bound for Portbury.

21/2 at 15.30 vehicle carrier Grande Detroit, 12,420 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 10.31 26th outward bound from Portbury having sailed 05.56).

22/2 at 15.35 vehicle carrier Neptune Aegli, 6,580 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Co Greece, inward bound for Portbury.

23/2 at 16.59 bulk carrier Lady Sema, 16,190 tons d.w., owners Sema Shipping Corp Turkey, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 06.00 hrs. At 17.37 cargo vessel Indi, 3,850 tons d.w., owners Indi Interscan UG Germany, outward bound from Sharpness having sailed at 06.57.

25/2 at 07.44 cargo vessel Wilson Main, 2,561 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, inward bound for Newport.

26/2 at 10.47 cargo vessel Natalie, 4,995 tons d.w., owners Natalie Hermann Lohmann Germany, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 02.03 20th (had been at anchor Blue Anchor Bay awaiting orders). At 15.53 car carrier Neptune Aegli, 6,580 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Co Ltd Greece, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 20.29 23rd.

27/2 at 10.20 bulk carrier Sea Falcon, 113,7152 tons d.w., owners Hampton Shipping Greece, inward bound for Portbury.

29/2 at 14.57 vehicle carrier Autosun, 6,670 tons d.w., owners Uniperssoal Madeira, inward bound for Portbury.

Regards,

Norman.

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Wilder Community drop-in, 8th March.

The free drop-in event is being hosted at the Northam Burrows Visitor Centre on Friday 8th March between 12:00 and 3:00pm. It will be a great chance to bring your ideas to the Wilder Communities Team, get inspiration, advice, and resources to take your idea or project to the next level.

The charity – Devon Wildlife Trust – has been at the forefront of protecting wildlife and the wild places that make Devon so special for over 60 years. The trust believe that a better world is where nature and people thrive together, and so the Wilder Communities Team is here to help support communities taking action for nature where they live, learn or work.

The Trust believe that connecting with or giving nature a helping hand doesn’t need large or well-funded schemes, although the trust can help you with those as well! The Wilder Communities team can help you no matter the size of your project from planting a mini-meadow in your garden or local park, helping hedgehogs in your street, or starting a community orchard or even if you just have an idea. They want to inspire people to make existing ideas a reality or use the trusts expertise to generate new ones. On top of this they also want to help individuals or groups connect with each other in communities and ultimately make the places where we live greener, wilder and richer in nature.

Torridge District Council is working closely with Devon Wildlife Trust and other environmental organisations to help deliver biodiversity improvements in the local area. This is part of the Government’s 25-year Environmental Plan and the nationwide strategy to halt the decline in wildlife and help promote nature recovery across the country.

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A tribute to Peter Christie.

Peter Christie.

We were very sorry to hear the news of the death of Peter Christie, Torridge councillor, author and historian, and loyal contributor to “Buzz”. He wrote a host of articles over the years, all of which have been saved for posterity in the Buzz Archives, and many which can be found on this website. He was a loyal supporter of the newsletter from its earliest days in 2005, helping us with funding via his role on the Bridge Trust, Bideford Town Council and Torridge District Council. He answered numerous questions posed by our readers on historical matters and was the ‘go to’ source for many local history queries.

He was also a personal friend and an adviser in my other role as Bideford Librarian.

All of us at “Buzz” send his friends and family our condolences at this sad time. We will miss him.

Rose Arno. Editor, “Bideford Buzz”.

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The Home Library Service.

Home Library Service.

Libraries Unlimited, the charity that runs the libraries in Devon, are seeking to grow our Home Library Service offer – could you possibly help?

What is the Home Library Service?

It is a service delivered by volunteers and organised by your local libraries to enable people in the community who cannot physically get to a library to access reading materials and/or audio books for free. As one customer (Hilda) told us,Reading takes me to “another place” and I would miss it terribly’.

What does it involve?

People apply to their local library to request the service and complete a form which gives a few details about what they would like to borrow from the library. Dedicated volunteers choose and deliver books to your home, including large print and audiobooks, free of charge and return them once used.

Who can apply to receive the service?

The service is open to anyone of any age who may not be able to get to a library for example because of health (this could be a short-term health issue), mobility difficulties or caring responsibilities.

Why become a Home Library Service Volunteer?

Current Home Library Service Volunteers describe feeling that what they do has purpose and ‘gives back’ to the community. Janie, a current volunteer, says ‘Many of my customers are fairly isolated and look forward to a short chat with me as I collect the books. At present I have 5 customers and it takes me around three hours once every 4-6 weeks to arrange a visit to collect the books; choose up to six for each reader and deliver them. A small amount of time overall, which brings much pleasure to the people using the service’.

Social connection is so important for our mental and physical health, and people of any age or stage in their lives can find themselves isolated or feeling lonely due to a change in circumstances. Many volunteers stay for a chat and a cuppa but only if this is welcomed and they feel comfortable to do so. One customer, Estelle, said, ‘I look forward to the visit and was delighted when the volunteer and the librarian were able to identify a book and author that I had enjoyed and wanted to read more of her work. Books keep you in touch with the outside world.Another customer, Chris, told us, ‘We are losing the mobile library, so this service is invaluable, as we are so cut off in rural Devon’.

Are you able to make someone’s day special and get that ‘feel good factor’?

How can you help?

We need volunteers to help with deliveries. This special role does suit people who are confident in choosing books and who understand the need for respecting confidentiality. Any travel expenses will be reimbursed, and the wonderful library staff and volunteer coordinators are always on hand to help with any queries and offer guidance. Due to the nature of the role, referencing and a DBS check will be required; we will work with you to try and make this process as quick and easy as possible. We aim to support anyone who is interested and will always look to try and resolve any barriers to participation. This is a flexible role which allows you to offer your time and energy around your other commitments and does not necessarily require access to a vehicle.

Who to contact?

If you are interested in either using the service or becoming a volunteer to support the service, please contact your local library so you can arrange to discuss the role. If you are not sure where your local library is, then please contact [email protected] and we can put you in touch.

There are also other volunteering opportunities available within libraries so please check out the individual libraries’ Facebook pages or contact the libraries directly if you would like to get involved.

As volunteer coordinator I am also interested in any other project ideas you may have. What does the community need? What are you passionate about? Please feel free to contact me Sarah Robinson Tel:07976584722 email: [email protected] with your suggestions.

Sarah Robinson.

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Book now to run for charity on 30th June.

northdevonmarathon.co.uk

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New guidance to help farmers with the Planning process.

Farmers in northern Devon can now benefit from new guidance before submitting planning applications thanks to a new document from North Devon and Torridge district councils.

The councils have produced the Planning Advice for Farmers guidance document to assist those in the agriculture industry with the submission of planning applications, as well providing advice on permitted development for farm businesses.

It gives advice on what when applications are required and what a good planning application looks at with respect to new farm buildings, slurry storage and engineering operations.

It also looks at what is required for those looking to diversify their business, including through renewable energy, the conversion of buildings, or development for tourism.

The guidance has been put together following discussions with North Devon Plus and the National Farmers Union, as well as local farmers from across northern Devon. While the document is not formal planning policy, it is intended to act as signposting guidance for farmers.

Lead Member for Economic Development and Strategic Planning Policy at North Devon Council, Councillor Malcolm Prowse, says: “We know the planning system is not always the easiest to navigate, and with changes to how farm subsidy payments are received, we felt it would be useful as district councils to produce guidance for our local agricultural industry to make it that bit easier for those looking to adapt, expand or diversify their business. We hope our farming communities find it useful”.

Lead Member for Planning at Torridge District Council, Councillor Rosemary Lock, says: “We have worked closely with the farming community and the National Farmers Union on this new planning guidance, with the collective goal of making the planning process an easier and smoother one to navigate for our farming community. We hope that it will be a welcome new tool for farming businesses, whether they are looking to adapt, expand or diversify, helping them to respond to market challenges and opportunities”.

You can find the Planning Advice for Farmers guidance document online on the North Devon Council website and on the Torridge District Council website.

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Shipping notes No. 226 (January).

Bideford Quay.

No shipping this month.

Yelland Quay.

No shipping this month.

Appledore.

Quorn and Atherstone still at shipyard.

Bristol Channel Observations.

1/1 at 05.42 vehicle carrier Don Quijote, 28,142 tons d.w., owners Wallenius Wilhelmsen Oslo and Stockholm, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 21.05 30th. At 16.55 vehicle carrier Grande Ellade, 18,855 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury.

2/1 at 07.25 cargo vessel Misje Violian, 5,000 tons d.w., owners Misje Ecobulk AS Norway, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 19.35 cargo vessel Key Sund, 2,132 tons d.w., owners Key Tankers AS Norway, inward bound for Avonmouth.

4/1 at 05.25 vehicle carrier Viking Bravery, 18,946 tons d.w., owners Cram Carcarriers Shipowning 4 Norway, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 00.29. At 16.10 vehicle carrier Oregon Highway, 17,699 tons d.w., owners SKD 5400 Shiping SA Japan, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 11.25.

5/1 at 16.37 vehicle carrier Hoegh Kobe, 19,670 tons d.w., owners Hoegh Autoliners Singapore, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 05.25 7th having sailed from Portbury at 01.15).

6/1 at 06.01 bulk carrier Aasfjord, 6,649 tons d.w., owners Aasnes Bulk Norway, inward bound for Port Talbot. At 17.20 cargo vessel Asg Anna Vovchuk, 3,004 tons d.w., owners unknown, inward bound for Newport. (At 10.55 9th seen again outward bound from Newport, having sailed at 0..58). At 17.23 tanker Askholmen, 16,802 tons d.w., owners OCM Tuna Askholmen LCC Netherlands, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 11.43.

7/1 at 06.45 vehicle carrier Triumph Ace, 20,131 tons d.w., owners Aurora Ca Maritime Trans SA Japan, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 02.44.

9/1 at 10.47 cargo vessel Celebrity, 4,624 tons d.w., owners Faversham Ships Ltd Isle of Wight, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 04.53. At 12.55 tanker Schwyz, 37,764 tons d.w., owners |um Houyoshi Ocean/Komenakr Kaium Japan, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 07.19. At 13.02 vehicle carrier Auto Energy, 16,988 tons d.w., owners Uniperssoal Madeira, inward bound for Portbury.

12/1 at 06.05 vehicle carrier Equuleus Leader, 20,141 tons d.w., owners Mitsubishi Ore Transport Co Japan, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 11.33 13th outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 06.01). At 12.30 vehicle carrier Lavender Ace, 17,262 tons d.w., owners Primavera Montana SA Japan, inward bound for Portbury.

14/1 at 13.45 bulk carrier Aasfjord, 6,649 tons d.w., owners Aasne Bulk Norway, inward bound for Cardiff. At 15.58 vehicle carrier Valiant Ace, 18,143 tons d.w., owners Second Maritime Ltd Japan, inward bound for Portbury.

15/1 at 14.47 bulk carrier Berge Hoverla, 175,918 tons d.w., owners Berge Hoverla Co Inc Singapore, inward bound for Port Talbot.

16/1 at 14.06 container ship Containerships V1, 13,520 tons d.w., owners Astra GMBH & Co KG Germany, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 10.01. At 15.52 vehicle carrier Auto Advance, 11,300 tons d.w., owners Uniperssoal Madeira inward, bound for Portbury.

18/1 at 05.41 bulk carrier Yeoman Bank, 38,997 tons d.w., owners Aggregate Industries UK, inward bound for Portbury. At 13.52 cargo vessel Arklow Accord, 8,543 tons d.w., owners Arklow Shipping Eire, inward bound for Swansea. At 16.57 cargo vessel Kirsten B, 5,535 tons d.w., inward bound for Newport.

19/1 at 08.07 bulk carrier Corella Arrow, 64,999 tons d.w., owners Glory Shipping SA Panama, inward bound for Portbury. At 16.23 cargo vessel Wilson Garston, 2,508 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, inward bound for Newport.

20/1 at 06.05 cargo vessel Wilson Dusavik, 3,664 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 23.35 19th. At 10.37 container ship Contship Fun, 11,836 tons d.w., owners Contship Symphony Shipping Ltd Greece, inward bound for Portbury. At 10.45 cargo vessel Pinta, 2,795 tons d.w., owners Pinta Interscan Shipping GMBH Germany, inward bound for Sharpness.

21/1 at 07.25 vehicle carrier RCC Prestige, 11,196 tons d.w., owners Prestige Ray Ltd Isle of Man, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 02.20.

22/1 at 07.40 cargo vessel Arklow Vanguard, 5,108 tons d.w., owners Ferrybank Shipping BV Eire, inward bound for Avonmouth.

23/1 at 05.42 cargo vessel Adnan N, 10,000 tons d.w., owners Menas Trading Ltd Turkey, inward bound for Cardiff.

24/1 at 14.05 cargo vessel Wilson Avonmouth, 3,594 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 05.47. At 14.54 vehicle carrier Emerald Leader, 10,821 tons d.w., owners Francis Maritima SA Norway, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 11.43 26th outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 07.20).

25/1 at 07.17 vehicle carrier Grande Florida, 15,833 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. At 10.58 vehicle carrier Morning Pilot, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 04.45. At 11.25 bulk carrier Notos Venture, 43,477 tons d.w., inward bound for Newport. At 11.36 cargo vessel Fluvius Ace, 3,171 tons d.w., inward bound for Sharpness. (Seen again 14.43 outward bound from Sharpness having sailed at 07.42).

26/1 at 06.15 vehicle carrier Altair Leader, 18,688 tons d.w., owners NYK Japan, inward bound for Portbury. At 11.42 vehicle carrier Neptune Dynamis, 6,850 tons d.w., owners Dynamis Shipping Co Greece, inward bound for Portbury. At 15.42 tanker Al Adailiah, 48,578 tons d.w., owners Kuwait Oil Tanker Co Kuwait, inward bound for Portbury.

27/1 at 05.37 bulk carrier Saga Falcon, 55,596 tons d.w., owners Saga Shipholding AS Norway, inward bound for Portbury. At 14.39 cargo vessel Eems Fivel, 3,800 tons d.w., owners Eems Fivel BV Netherlands, inward bound for Newport.

28/1 at 09.37 cargo vessel Eems Delf, 3,805 tons d.w., owners Eems Delf BV Netherlands, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 10.47 cargo vessel Eems Dublin, 6,555 tons d.w., owners Eems Dublin BV Netherlands, inward bound for Avonmouth.

29/1 at 11.36 vehicle carrier Morning Peace, 22,438 tons d.w., owners S830 International SA South Korea, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 07.08. At 13.15 bulk carrier Federal Clyde, 34,564 tons d.w., owners Federal Oceans Ltd Canada, inward bound for Cardiff. At 15.25 cargo vessel Wilson Amsterdam, 3,602 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, inward bound for Swansea. At 14.56 vehicle carrier Auto Star, 6,504 tons d.w., owners Uniperssoal Madeira, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 11.35.

31/1 at 09.21 cargo vessel Wilson Brake, 3,710 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 10.51 cargo vessel Wilson Dublin, 3,778 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning Norway, inward bound for Sharpness. At 11.06 vehicle carrier Neptune Dynamis, 6,850 tons d.w., owners Dynamis Shipping Greece, inward bound for Portbury.

Regards,

Norman.

Another picture from my collection – Arco Axe at Appledore.

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Skydive for charity in June or October.

www.chsw.org.uk/skydive

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British Naturalists’ Association – local programme, 2024.

BRITISH NATURALISTS’

ASSOCIATION

TAW AND EXMOOR BRANCH

Local Secretary

Brian Sims

9 Old Torrington Road

Barnstaple

North Devon

EX31 2DD

Tel: (01271) 343607

PROGRAMME TO JANUARY, 2025.

PLEASE NOTE – PARTICIPATION AT ALL EVENTS IS AT YOUR OWN RISK.

Sunday March 17th

By popular request a walk through an Atlantic Oak Woodland for lichens, mosses etc., with Eirene Williams. Meet at the CP* at 10.15 am or if going direct then at 11.00 am at the Lee Bay car park (Map Ref SS 480 465). Wet in places but fairly easy walking. Pub lunch afterwards.

Sunday April 14th

A circular Spring walk down through Brownsham Woods to the coast for birds, flowers and early butterflies. Meet at CP* at 9.30 am or if going direct at 10.15 am in the Brownsham car park (Map Ref SS 288 260).Bring a packed lunch and sturdy footwear. Possible cream tea afterwards.

Sunday May 19th

A walk around Emsworthy Mire for bluebells and Summer migrants including the cuckoo (hopefully). Meet at the CP* at 9.00am or if going direct then at 10.45 am at the car park at Emsworthy (Map Ref SX 748 763)

If time then a visit to Bovey Heathfield nature reserve (Map Ref SX 825 765) for a different selection of wildlife. Followed by a cream tea. Bring suitable footwear and a packed lunch..

Sunday June 2nd

A walk around the DWT reserve at Volehouse (Map Ref SS 347 165 ) for flowers and marsh fritillary butterflies. Meet at the Pill car park in Bideford at 9.30 am as limited parking on site. In the afternoon we have been invited to view the wild flower meadow belonging to the Tudor House known as Cory Manor House. The owners are happy to offer us a cream tea, Appropriate footwear and bring a packed lunch.

June 10th-14th

BNA trip to Dorset. Book in at the Kingston Country Courtyard Tel : 01929 481066. Details on visits to Arne, Brownsea Island etc. to follow.

Sunday July 14hh

A circular walk at Hartland Point. Meet at the Pill car park, Bideford at 10.00 am or 10.45 am if going direct at the Hartland Point car park (Map Ref SS 235 276) . Possible car park charge. Bring a packed lunch and sturdy footwear. There is a cafe in the car park.

Sunday August 11th

A walk out to Baggy Point for birds, flowers, butterflies and possibly seals. Meet at CP* at 9.30 am or if going direct then in the Baggy Point car park (Map Ref SS 432 397) (Post code EX33 1PA).at 10.15 am Car park charge. Bring a packed lunch and sturdy footwear. Possible cream tea.

Sunday September 8th

Another popular request, this time a walk around Torrington Common for butterflies, flowers and trees. Meet at CP* at 10.00am or in the Torrington Common lower car park at 10.30am. Steep in places. Sturdy footwear and a packed lunch. This may be the last cream tea of the year.

Sunday October 13th

A Fungus foray led by our own John Willatts. Meet at the Devon Birds Reserve at Godborough (Map Ref SS 475 273) at 11.00 am. Steep in places, so sturdy footwear. Bring a packed lunch.

Saturday November 9th

Annual General Meal, at the Royal North Devon Golf Club, Westward Ho!.6.30 pm for 7.00 pm. After the meal there will be entertainment before the serious part of the evening when you decide what outings you would like for your branch in the forthcoming year.

Sunday December 15th

Birdwatching Bonanza. Meet at the CP* at 9.00 am to go to Topsham. If going direct be there at Dart’s Farm at 10.15 am (Post code EX3 0QH) visiting Dart’s Farm, Goosemoor, the RSPB Reserve at Bowling Green Marsh, the River Clyst, the Goat Walk and possibly Exminster Marshes and Powderham. Packed lunch, hot drinks, warm clothes. Level walking,

Sunday January 12th 2025

A trip to the RSPB Reserve at Ham Wall on the Somerset Levels hopefully to see bittern, kingfisher and a starling murmuration. Meet at the CP* at 9.00am or if going direct then at 10.45 am in the Ham Wall car park (Post Code BA6 9SX) where there are toilets and a small shop/cafe. Bring warm clothing, hot drink and a packed lunch. Very level walking.

CP* This is the former Park and Ride car park in Barnstaple alongside Park School..This enables us to amalgamate into fewer vehicles and save money and help protect the environment At the time of going to print it was free.

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Northam Burrows events in March.

Conservation projects on Northam Burrows and in neighbouring nature reserves are  in full swing. Over the next few months Torridge rangers will be looking to carry out a whole range of tasks aimed at looking after these green spaces, improving wildlife and nature habitats, and making these more accessible for both residents and visitors. At the same time, the rangers will also be busy organising and running a series of fun and educational activities to encourage families to get outdoors during the school holidays.

Vital to the success of these schemes are the many volunteers that give up their time to help out with the projects, and the council’s recruitment campaign is now underway. Previous participants have commented on how taking part has been a great way to get fit, whilst also learning new skills and a unique way to experience some of the wonderful nature reserves dotted across the district. In a similar vein, the experience days are designed to teach locals and holiday makers about the wildlife to be discovered on the area’s beaches in the mud and rockpools.

The events are designed for all abilities and allow people to participate at their own pace while feeling good about making a positive contribution to the environment.

The current events schedule can be found on the council’s Northam Burrows web pages www.torridge.gov.uk/northamburrowsevents but includes the following opportunities:

Wednesday 13th March – 10am – 3pm – Footpath improvements Northam Burrows Country Park.

Wednesday 20th March – 10am – 3pm – Dune fencing Northam Burrows Country Park.

Sunday 24th March – 10am – 12pm – Beach clean Westward Ho! – meet on slipway.

All events are free to attend with no experience necessary and tools provided for the various tasks. However, pre-booking is essential, partly so that people can be contacted if there are any changes as a result of weather and ground conditions. Participants are also advised to bring suitable clothing, footwear and a packed lunch and refreshments.

The beach cleans above are great for all the family, but additional events during the half term include:

Tuesday 13th February – 2pm – 4pm – Mud dipping Northam Burrows Country Park, meet Greysand car park.

Thursday 15th February – 2pm – 4pm – Rockpool Ramble Northam Burrows Country Park, meet near Westward Ho! Slipway.

The rangers particularly need help with the tasks at Kenwith Valley nature reserve in Bideford. The lake and surrounding area are one of Torridge’s hidden gems, so taking part in the planned events will be an opportunity to learn more about this less well known location and its abundant wildlife.

People are welcome to attend for part of the sessions if they cannot attend for the full day. You can email [email protected] or telephone 01237 479708 to book a place or find out more.

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