West Stormont Woodland Group

West Stormont
Woodland Group

Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) SC051682

Join us today to bring Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into community ownership

Community Monthly Update March 2023

This month, here are some musings on the season and community wealth building from Bob Talbot. March is famous for “mad” hares, for its “ides”, for occasional sun that feels like May, and for its winds, which, with April showers, “bringeth forth the May flowers”. In short it is a month of change, leaving winter behind but not forgotten, shaking the snow off its coat tails and setting its face towards better and hopefully warmer times ahead.

Small clump of frog spawn in ditch pool in Five Mile Wood 14 March 2023

Word(s) of the Month

COMMUNITY WEALTH BUILDING (CWB for short) underpins much of the Scottish Government’s thinking about how the Scottish economy and environment can be improved. It is built upon 5 pillars

Spending: Procure & Commission goods & services locally, developing good enterprises; fair work and shorter supply chains.

Workforce: Increasing fair work & developing local labour markets that support the wellbeing of communities.

Land and Property: Growing social, ecological, financial and economic value that local communities gain from land and property assets.

Inclusive ownership: Develop more local and social enterprises which generate community wealth, including social enterprises, employee-owned firms and cooperatives.

Finance: Ensuring that flows of investment and financial institutions work for local people, communities and businesses.

Projects building on these pillars are currently underway on a regional and city region basis throughout Scotland, and it is our belief that the WSWG project accords fully with this framework, for which reason the WSWG board is working hard to consolidate the support it deserves.

So, what news?

We have now received our preliminary feedback from the CATS site visit on 26 January and Panel meeting on 3 February from which will follow in depth discussions on various aspects of the WSWG Proposal in the near future.

We are also networking with a view to expanding our Wildwood Steering Group to bring on new skills and increased capacity for the project going forward. Let us know if you think you can bring some valuable expertise to this group. We are particularly keen to find people who can help organise community events, develop our social media presence and work with the trustees on progressing our fundraising strategy.

Given the potential scale of community wealth building from the WSWG Proposal and West Stormont Connect, we are also working hard to secure solid political support for our project in its wider context.

What’s coming up next?

  • Earth Hour Saturday 25 March, 8.30pm – please take part for the planet if you can. www.wwf.org.uk/earth-hour
  • C406 Tackle Litter Group community litter-pick, Sunday 26 March, road closed 1-4pm. WSWG volunteers wanted to help clean up Taymount Wood entrance and nearby road verges. Email us as contact@weststormontwoodlandgroup.scot for details if you’d like to help.
  • Wildflower and Mining Bee Rescue Mission: volunteers needed for urgent gorse mulch clearance in Taymount & Five Mile Woods: 29th, 31st March; 2nd, 4th & 6th April. 10.30am–3pm. There is a huge amount of material blanketing the ground layer, risking suppressing the delicate and valuable wildflowers we have along all our forest tracks and smothering the tunnels in which mining bees overwinter so we are looking for many hands to make lighter work raking and brushing it around to relieve some of the problem before the wildflowers start growing and the bees start emerging. There are also gorse and birch stumps and other debris trip hazards which we would like to cut back, as well as clearing some of the debris from the ditchlines. We are not sure how much of it can be done by volunteers but we would like to have a go to see how much positive impact we can have to rescue the wildflowers and bees. We will be putting up more details on our events page with information as to how to get involved and will send out a link to all on our mailing list in the next few days. Please do help in this important mitigation work if you can.
  • WSWG stall at Perth and Kinross Climate Action Earth Day Market Perth Civic Hall, 22 April
Typical extent of gorse and scrub clearance, here in Five Mile Wood
Large and small debris in ditch and along verges
Thickness of gorse mulch on what should be wildflower-rich verge
Indication of scraping work needed to expose the soil surface



Previous Articles

Community Monthly Update – May 2024

We are really delighted this month to start with the announcement that the winner of the WSWG April Photography Competition in the Children’s category is Dougie from Highland Perthshire. His stunning and clever photograph was taken at the head of Loch Rannoch, looking west, on Saturday 20 April. Such a beautiful, calm scene in our precious Perthshire countryside, but just look at the perfect capture of the beautiful splash effect at its heart. A truly super photo.

Congratulations, Dougie. Thank you very much for taking part in this competition and your well-deserved prize will be making its way to you very soon.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – April 2024

On Sunday 14 April, a lovely bunch of people turned out for a WSWG Guided Climate and Biodiversity Walk in Taymount Wood to celebrate the start of the new Perth & Kinross Climate Action Hub (PKCAH) for which funding has been secured from the Scottish Government.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – March 2024

It is a disappointing thing to have to do, but a surprisingly rewarding thing to have done. We are talking about picking up someone else’s litter. We all know Taymount Wood car park occasionally suffers from fly tipping, but it is regular littering which is more of a chronic problem, clogging the ditches, being strewn around the verges, blown into the brambles and nettles, overgrown by rank grass, buried in the soil, or crushed by vehicles if not removed regularly.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – February 2024

First up this month, a big thank you to the Community Payback Team from Westbank in Perth who very kindly made an impromptu stop when passing to remove the worst of some fly tipping they spotted in the Taymount Wood car park in January. A heap of black bin-bags full of spent growing medium and general rubbish had been dumped near the entrance gate a few days earlier. They were unable to clear it all up in one go but are going to come back to complete the task for us. Moreover, they have offered to keep a watching eye on the site in future and clear up what they can. That will be such a help.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – January 2024

Unusually, we’re starting this Monthly Update with a “What’s Coming Up Next” item! This message is principally for people in the Stanley and District community but we’d love to suggest all villages in the West Stormont area follow suit with their own aim of becoming a Biodiversity Village.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – December 2023

It’s another year end and this time WSWG member Françoise from Stanley has created an exquisite 2024 calendar of “Wildflowers and Friends” she photographed in Taymount Wood this year to help raise funds for WSWG. Having gone for a print run of 50, these gorgeous calendars are available on a first-come, first-served basis for a donation of £10 (or a bit more if you wish!) with net proceeds going towards the purchase of the woods.

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