• The Big Barcaple Bioblitz!
    July 26, 2017

    In early July we joined forces with our Partners in Action, Chinnor Churches Go Wild and Adventure Plus to launch our new Partner in Action in Scotland—the Abernethy Centre at Barcaple in Dumfriesshire. Fifteen of us headed north to help the centre survey their land and discover what incredible plants, birds and animals exist in their fields and woodlands.

    So what is Barcaple, I hear you ask? It’s an outdoor activity centre for young people, including many from disadvantaged backgrounds and some with special educational needs. It is run by Christian charity The Abernethy Trust, which look after four centres across Scotland. The Abernethy Barcaple team are keen to integrate a greater care for the land they manage, into their range of outdoor and indoor activities.

    And that’s where A Rocha UK came in. We pulled together a team of volunteers for a Bioblitz survey to find what species and habitats reside ... Read more...

  • Journey through Eco Church
    July 21, 2017

    We’re gathering the Eco Churches together for two packed days of talks and workshops this October— one in Sheffield and one in London.

    Delegates will have the opportunity to put practical questions from their churches to our experts and hear the stories of other churches working towards the Eco Church Award.


    Contributors will include, among others – our CEO Andy Atkins, Eco Church Manager Nigel Hopper, our Conservation Manager Andy Lester, Bishop of Kingston Rt Rev Richard Cheetham, A Rocha International Director of Theology Rev Dave Bookless, Tearfund Global Advocacy and Influencing Director Dr Ruth Valerio – formerly of A Rocha UK – and Historic England Senior Architectural Conservator Robyn Pender.

    They will present seminars, surgeries and stories. The southern conference will take place on 7th October at St James’s Church, Piccadilly, London. The northern conference will be held on 21st October ... Read more...

  • Comment: Climate changes our nature
    July 21, 2017

    Dainty Bluet (2)It’s been another record-breaking summer. We’ve had the highest ever night-time temperatures in some parts of the UK, and the longest stretch of days over 30C since 1973.


    There’s no doubt climate change is changing Britain’s species and landscape. Most of that change isn’t at all welcome. The demise of Ash trees—with a disease known as Ash dieback—is caused by a fungus that loves the warmer and wetter conditions across northern England and Scotland. The disease is spreading far faster than it would’ve done without the weather shift. Warmer conditions also favour many exotic—and invasive—species such as Spanish bluebell, which is overtaking our native bluebell in many areas.

    But there is a silver lining. A number of butterfly and dragonfly/damselfly species are responding well to the warmth, with comma butterfly and willow emerald damselfly spreading north and west as climate ... Read more...

  • 300 explore secret world of bees
    July 21, 2017

    bees 1 (1)Nearly 300 schoolchildren and staff were led by some of our workers into the secret world of bees at our urban nature reserve Wolf Fields.

    Aged from eight to ten, the students from Wolf Fields Primary School and Norwood Green Juniors – which are near the three-acre site – took part in a ‘pollination party’ hosted by London Education Manager David Melville and his team.


    A highlight was on the Monday afternoon, when the ten year-olds were able to try out the Bee Observation Hide with live bees for the first time. Bee Officer Laura Belton had sown a mesh of material together so up to 30 children could gather into a huge hide and get ‘close up and personal’ to our bee colony. This trial run took ten – including six deaf students.

    This was followed by a visit to ...

  • York Minster scoops Silver Award
    July 21, 2017

    Ravage productions-2 (3)Built in Gothic style, York Minster points to heaven, but is also rooted in the earth – as shown by scooping the Silver Award in our Eco Church scheme.

    Our Engagement Director Rich Bee (pictured centre) presented the honour to Dean of York Minster Very Rev Dr Vivienne Faull in July. The ceremony took place at a service in the presence of the Archbishop of York, Most Rev Dr John Sentamu and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Most Rev Justin Welby.

    ‘The improvement in position to the Silver Award came not from a short burst of action,’ said Dr Faull, ‘but from recognising the many actions we’ve been taking and continue to take with regard to our sustainability and the impact we have on our planet.’


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