The Conservation Volunteers announce partnership with the Land Trust to manage vital green spaces in the heart of South Yorkshire

3rd October 2016

National community volunteering charity The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) is embarking on an exciting new programme to engage local communities in the use and management of 465 hectares (ha) of green spaces in South Yorkshire over the next 10 years.

TCV has been appointed as the Managing Partner by landowner, the Land Trust, and will be responsible for the management of seven green spaces, which include 237 ha of plantation woodland across seven sites in Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham.

These important green spaces at New Park Springs, Cudworth Common, Phoenix Park, Brodsworth, Bentley, Kiveton and Dinnington have been created over the last 20 years through the reclamation and landscaping of former coal mining sites. The sites have been transformed to create a vibrant mosaic of landscapes and habitats including wetlands, woods, heaths, meadows and park land. These habitats support a wide range of wildlife and particularly, a large number of birds including buzzards, several species of owl, and a wide range of song birds and ground nesting birds. They were transferred to the national land management charity, the Land Trust to manage in perpetuity for community benefit.

Together our vision is to make the most of these green spaces and everything they have to offer by engaging individuals and organisations across South Yorkshire to maximise the environmental and community benefits.

TCV will work with local charities and organisations so they too can benefit from using the sites. From TCV’s experience of working across green spaces in hundreds of sites across the country, the charity knows the positive impact that green spaces can have in improving health and wellbeing, and also in tackling social disadvantage and isolation. All these benefits combine to create healthier and happier communities. If you are interested in getting involved, please get in touch.

Under the previous rangers, the Forestry Commission, the sites benefited from many hours of volunteer support and TCV will carry on managing the existing volunteering activities and developing new ones over the coming 18 months. If you are an existing volunteer or would like further information on how to volunteer, please contact TCV on 01302 388887 or e-mail southyorkshire@tcv.org.uk

Darren York, Managing Director at TCV, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be partnering with the Land Trust to work on a project of this sheer scale. Our teams will be using their expertise to manage and retain existing habitats for use by local communities, charities and businesses. TCV has over 50 years’ experience working with communities to maximise the benefits of having amazing green spaces on their doorsteps. We know our work with our partner Land Trust will help to create healthier and happier communities for everyone right across South Yorkshire and we cannot wait to get started.”

Alan Carter, Director of Portfolio Management at the Land Trust, said: “We are extremely proud of these community woodlands, which now provide valuable green space and opportunities for the surrounding communities. Over recent years people have contributed thousands of hours of voluntary work on these sites, participated in hundreds of community events and enjoyed these spaces with their families and friends. We are delighted that our partnership with the Conservation Volunteers will, over the next ten years, further the excellent charitable work undertaken to date, by the Forestry Commission, to make these sites even better and we would like to thank them for their commitment.”

Andy Medhurst, Forest District Manager, Central District, at the Forestry Commission, said: “The Forestry Commission is immensely proud to have been involved with these sites for over 15 years. We’ve helped take them from black ex-colliery spoil heaps to the amazing Community Woodland sites they are today. Working with Yorkshire Forward, to plan and implement the transformation of these sites into woodlands and community spaces. To the creation of the Land Trust who took on the ownership of these sites to hold them in perpetuity for the local communities. The whole team have enjoyed working to develop these sites and watch them grow and transform into the amazing Community Woodlands that they are today. We’ve delivered an extensive range of community, learning, health and volunteering projects over this time, have had great fun and lots of laughter! We’d like to thank everyone who over the years has helped shaped these woodlands and involvement from the local communities; we really couldn’t have done it without you.”


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