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A wet workday in February 2024

Volunteers and Rangers met in Simon’s Wood today for much needed winter repairs. Filling potholes in the car park made worse by the recent rain and replacing damaged parameter fencing were the main tasks of the day along with the usual litter picking.

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December workdays at Simon's Wood

Here at Friends of Finchampstead Ridges, our first workday in December took place at Brooks Heath in Simon's Wood. A group of Salesforce volunteers also came along to assist with the clearance of gorse and birch saplings. This will enable the heather regenerate and recover from being forever over shadowed.
At our tea break here in this photo, we were kindly supplied with festive and very welcomed mince pies from Lauren, our National Trust Volunteer and Community Involvement Manager - thank you Lauren.

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Volunteer Vacancies

There are 3 new volunteer roles within Finchampstead Ridges, Simon's Wood and Ambarrow:

- Habitat Monitoring - Butterflies

- Habitat Monitoring - Birds

- Dog Ranger

The Habitat Monitor roles will suit you if you are:

- Outdoorsy and passionate about the countryside, with a love of any or all wildlife and plant life but especially butterflies, bats, birds, and priority habitats.

- Reasonably fit and healthy as you will be walking over varied terrain.

- Comfortable reading maps and finding your own way around in the countryside without a staff member.

- Happy working in a team or independently

The Dog Ranger role will suit you if you are:

- A responsible dog owner who enjoys walking their dog in the open countryside.

- Happy and confident speaking with other people in an enthusiastic and friendly manner.

-Passionate about dogs, dog walking and the great outdoors.

- Keen to walk with others, whether it's staff, other volunteers, or visitors.

For more information please contact Lauren Bailey-Barber, Volunteer & Community Involvement Manager at:

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August Workdays

Simon's Wood

This month we were once again tackling Rhody regen....however NT Ranger Andrew Norris now has his chemicals ticket so he was following on from the chainsaw to kill off the remaining stumps.

We have the opportunity to appreciate how much light now reaches the woodland floor which in time should encourage those plants that grow in these conditions.

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Friends of Finchampstead Rangers received

their new Ranger Polo Shirts ready for

World Ranger Day on 31st July.

April Workdays at Simon's Wood

There have been significant improvements to the car park on recent volunteer days. This has been a phased programme to not only improve the surface but also to increase capacity. 


The car park surface required removal of accumulated autumn debris followed by compaction of suitable hardcore.

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Fencing surrounding the car park had deteriorated over the years and a great deal needed replacing.


Suitable Chestnut trees were identified adjacent to the car park and posts cut to size. The posts were used as uprights for the new fencing and also put in place either side of the drive.

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Additional work was undertaken on the supplementary entry barrier to enable this to be fully lockable as and when required.

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February and March Workdays

  • February's work involved placing 80 tons of aggregate in Simon's Wood car park to re-level areas and repair the winter surface damage.

  • The broken horse guard rails at the bottom of the Ridges were also replaced by the Ranger/volunteer team.

  • March delivered a cold and snowy workday on the Ridges but it included time out for volunteers to receive their 5 and 10 year service awards from Head Ranger Jamie.

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