Worst weather ever for Deutsche Bank workshop!

Every year we welcome Deutsche Bank staff to a ‘Woodland Workshop’ where they get a chance to learn some outdoor skills and the Rangers benefit from their assistance on site.

Today there was a twist……..in that the weather was possibly the worst we have seen this year and our original plans for a workshop in the woods with a open air campfire lunch were literally washed away!

For safety reasons, the woods were deemed too dangerous in the high winds so the decision was made to divert to working on a project to restore the heathland on ‘Bilbury Hill’. That involved removing brambles and self set silver birch and proved a real challenge as this area of the hills is very high and very open and the rain was exceptionally heavy.

If you follow this link you will see how wet it was (by the quality of the photographs!) but also how everyone soon warmed up, ready for lunch, once we retreated from the weather. Unfortunately it had to be cooked in an oven instead of on an open fire, but that didn’t stop everyone enjoying a hearty meal.

Sponsor and plant ‘Trees for Life’ with BTFL this March

This year’s annual ‘Family and Friends’ sponsors’ tree planting event will be at the Lickey Hills on Saturday 23rd March. You can sponsor tree planting in memory of a loved one, or to celebrate or commemorate a family occasion – or just for fun!  Planting trees is a lovely way for the family to remember a loved one, and we’ve had marriages, births, birthdays and engagements celebrated too.

Sponsorship starts at £25. You can find out how to do this on the ‘individual sponsorship’ page of this website – just follow the instructions!  If you would like to come to the event on the 23rd, please make sure your sponsorship form and money is with us by 14th March.

Lots of helpers at Senneleys Park extension.

Today we welcomed 29 pupils from Woodcock Hill Primary School to continue planting in Senneleys Park, but this time in the nearby extension to the park (adjacent to Newman University). Some of their pupils had worked with us in late 2018 in the main park area, and were keen to plant more trees!

Volunteers from Deutsche Bank Birmingham, and students from Bournville College (SCCB) helped boost the numbers, and it took just over an hour to get 5 large trees and 500 small saplings into the ground.
Last year we were lucky enough to meet volunteers from a national group called Green S Welfare Force and today they travelled all the way from London in the South and Warrington in the North to help.

They stayed behind to help check that every sapling was tucked up warm in the ground and that none had been inadvertently left exposed. Such a shame we couldn’t show them some lovely sunshine in Birmingham, but we hope to meet them again in March on one of our final plantings at Norman Chamberlain Playing Fields. The promised rain held off till we had finished, and you can see from our gallery that everyone had a great time….despite the change in the weather!

Sunshine for planting at Shenley Fields.

What more could you want? Amazing weather, enthusiastic children and helpful volunteers.

A mixed age group of pupils from Our Lady and St Rose of Lima Catholic Primary school, assisted by staff from Deutsche Bank Birmingham, made short work of planting 10 beautiful new ornamental trees around the edge of Shenley Fields Recreation Ground. The trees are part of a plan to replace some elderly poplar trees that have had to be removed.

Our thanks must go as well to the two Councillors that worked really hard alongside everyone and also the Woodland Team, who do the majority of the hard digging. Follow this link to more photos

 

Hearts all round!

You may notice from our photo album today that lots of the pupils and adults are holding green hearts. This is part of a wider project to get people to think of what they love about the environment and how they feel at this time, and in this case their experience of planting trees with BTFL. The words are their own………….some of the pupils words are very thoughtful. Thank you everyone for taking part!

Perry Common Rec was full of planters today!

We think this post says it all. Well done, the local community. Over 150 pupils and 50+ adults turned out in force today to help us start the replanting of Perry Common Recreation Ground, after extensive work following the building of some new housing and flood prevention measures devastated this green area. Today’s efforts were the start of a long term replanting initiative.

To say it was busy was an understatement….but everyone pitched in and worked together to plant close to 1500 small saplings that will hopefully create some eco friendly copse areas on this open land.

There were so many schools and groups involved that we have decided just to list them, but would refer you to our album of the day to get a closer look at their involvement.

Pupils from: St Margaret Mary RC Primary, Oasis Short Heath Academy and St Bernadette’s RC Primary ( between 40 and 60 pupils from each!). We would also like to thank the many parents and staff (and mini bus drivers) that accompanied them to site to help with planting.

Our thanks also go to all the adult volunteers who came along from Deutsche Bank Birmingham, Witton Lodge Community Association and Birmingham University students (BADG group), as well as our own volunteers and the BCC Woodland Team.

Unusually today we all managed to get in a photo together, along with Linda from the Friends.

I feel sure there will be more photos on the Witton Lodge Community site as well!!

So many leaves at Garrison Lane Park with BVCS !

We came very close to being buried by leaves today at Garrison Lane Park…..and the amazing London Plane trees on this site were awe inspiring but Bordesley Village Community School had tree planting on their minds………

BVC School is very close to this park and most of the pupils use the playground here. They also come here to play football with their Sports Teacher occasionally, so they were all familiar with this open green space in an extremely urban area in the shadow of the ‘Blues’ ground.

Their task today was to add 5 new large standard trees to the perimeter of the site and then plant 100 smaller whips in one corner. As you can see here, they made a great job of both tasks and hopefully a small coppice will mature in this empty corner. Well done to them all for working hard to get this job done in record time and we hope to work with them again in the summer, when we will be revisiting to see all their trees in leaf.

Shout out for Teachers !

I feel I need to ‘shout out’ for Teachers everywhere. There is a school of thought that they go home and finish work at 3.30,…. but BTFL have to say that we have seen many indications recently that their days are getting longer and longer with the advent of the ‘Smart Phone’!!

I used to e mail teachers at tea time and expect a reply maybe the next working day. Now it is becoming the norm to receive a reply in the evening or late at night! When I question them, they all reply that they have to deal with a huge amount of work…..including catching up on e mails, in their evenings and weekends.

Can we offer our thanks to them for taking the time to deal with our requests for school involvement- as it would be very easy for them not to bother!!