We have an active group of volunteers working with Stoke Park’s Ranger to manage the parkland for conservation and access. Our volunteers get involved in a wide range of activities, ranging from building and maintenance, to wildlife recording and surveys. There are so many benefits to getting involved in Stoke Park, including spending time outdoors, meeting new people, learning new skills and making an impact in your local area.
Volunteer sessions run every Thursday, 10:00am-12:30pm and the first Saturday of every month, 10:00am-12:30pm.
Ongoing activities include:
We have located a number of reptile mats around the pack which we regularly survey. Grass Snakes and Slow Worms are common finds!
We have mapped out a transect which we walk weekly from April to October, counting butterflies. The data are then submitted to national butterfly monitoring organisations.
We regularly work on the orchard (around 210 fruit trees) to tend to the trees and make the fruit accessible to all.
We repair paths, build steps and generally improve accessibility. We also aim to reduce some of the most muddy spots!
Funding for training was obtained by the volunteers from the Rural Skills Hub. Once completed, we’ll be laying further hedges in the park and will be able to show new volunteers what to do.
For a historical experience, we learnt how to scythe using traditional methods.
Weed Pulling in Preparation for Hay Cutting
We’re often pulling ragwort so that certain areas of the park can be cut for hay.
An invasive species from Portugal in the 17th century, we are in a continuous battle with Cherry Laurel in the park. The only place it should be present is at the Grand Forum in Long Wood.
Ever a problem, we often focus on clearing litter and also have a bin bag in tow at all sessions.
We restore hedgerows and also replant trees where needed in accordance with the history of the park (e.g. in the black metal tree protectors found around the park).
Making sure the dew ponds and cart ponds across the park are suitable for the important wildlife they support.
If you’d like to find out more or get involved, please fill our our registration form.
You can also visit our blog to hear from some of our volunteers about the work that’s happening in Stoke Park.