High Weald Energy Days: Conservators of Ashdown Forest and Sussex Wildlife Trust.
Project description: over 300 Primary and Secondary School children attended two different Energy Days, one held at Ashdown Forest Centre and the other at Buchan Country Park. They learnt about sustainable energy resources in the High Weald from the present, past and future; experiencing several activities, from designing and racing their own solar powered cars, to hunting for food using medieval bows and arrows. These days were supported by The Skinners School, Beacon Community College and Oriel High School, as well as Weald Forest Ridge scheme partners; East Sussex Archaeology Museum Partnership, Sussex Wildlife Trust Forest Schools and West Sussex County Council.
Awarded: £750 per project
Rolvenden Heritage Survey: Rolvenden Farmers Line
Project description: Surveys were carried out by local volunteers and Rolvenden Primary School to record the settlement form in the Parish of Rolvenden. Analysis of these surveys is to be used to enable the local community to better understand how the local settlement pattern has developed historically, and to help the community evaluate and influence future development in a sustainable way.
Natural Decoration Workshops: Plumpton College
Project description: 19 individuals attended two Natural Christmas Decoration Workshops held at Forest Row and Woodland Enterprise Centre. The workshops used locally collected materials from local woodlands and hedgerows. The training was aimed at local businesses and the local community, and set up to demonstrate what can be achieved by using natural materials for decorative purposes, and to cascade these skills to the wider community.
Cranesden Farm protection of ancient woodland: Mr & Mrs Farbrother
Project description: stock fencing was put in place to protect 2 hectares of ancient woodland which was currently being grazed by pigs and sheep. The pigs were relocated to another part of the farm.
Nectar Network: High Weald Landscape Trust and Grassland Trust
Project description: Local landowners were provided with local provenance seed. This seed will be introduced and trial the practical component, delivering, flowery rich plant margins to encourage nectar feeders. 4 meetings were also held for key individuals such as Greg Barker MP and Sara Stoner (Vice Lord Lieutenant) to inform and support future funding for invertebrates and nectar networks in the Weald.
Volunteer Trainee Warden: Kent Wildlife Trust
Project description: This project has developed a volunteer trainee warden’s skills in habitat management and interpretation of 3 nature reserves within the High Weald. The trainee has undergone extensive training in woodland management as well as managing a volunteer team to survey the sites for woodland archaeology remains, using the Toolkit developed by Weald Forest Ridge HEA Project.
Restoration of hedge following the local footpath through Twissels Mill: Wiggins Trust
Project description: An old Hornbeam hedge has been restored following the local routeway, this will protect areas of planting from grazing sheep.
Work in the Woods: Small Woods Association
Project description: Three day taster training session was held at the beginning of March, in coppice and Green Wood crafts, at the Woodland Enterprise Centre. 8apprentices attended and 5 have signed up to a new Green Woods training apprenticeship, course to be run by Plumpton College. The project has developed young people's understanding of the true value and importance of local woods and the craft goods that are produced locally. To date 3 employers have confirmed they will be taking on apprentices from this programme.