Clare Mahdiyone from Stroud Valleys Project is leading the way for the environmental charity’s fundraising bike ride on June 19 by getting on a bike after 30 years.

Clare_-_bike_ride“It was a challenge to get back in the saddle after such a long time,” said Clare, who is director of projects at SVP, “but I am determined to give it a go.”  Clare, who did not own a bike, contacted the newly formed The Gloucestershire Bike Project and bought one of their refurbished bikes specially to take part.

So far she has been promised £400 in sponsorship but is hoping to raise lots more. “We decided to organise the bike ride partly to raise money to keep the charity running and partly as a fun day out in the countryside giving families a chance to take a more leisurely look at some of our project work and the wonderful area we live in,” explained Clare.

The event is being organised in partnership with the Museum in the Park ride starts and finishes through the Jubilee Gates. People have a choice of three routes (10,12 or 36 miles) through the Severn Vale passing several locations that Stroud Valleys Project has worked on. Anyone interested can sign up on the website or call in at our eco shop in Threadneedle Street for sponsorship forms.

Volunteers for environmental charity Stroud Valleys Project clocked up the equivalent of £50,000 in paid work restoring traditional landscape features around Frampton-on-Severn.Pond restoration with EA at Frampton

The 18 month scheme, run by two project workers Nadine Smykatz-Kloss and Mark Claridge and funded by the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund, finished last month (March). The SVP project workers and their team of 162 volunteers planted 1,200 metres of hedgerow, created three ponds and restored 11 more as well as restoring five orchards, running six surveys, installing seven wooden kissing gates and organising nine events for local schools.

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Monday 9th May, 10am-1pm

Rodborough Common VIP walkWhere would you head for locally if you wanted to find orchids, striking pasque flowers as well as Adonis and small blue butterflies? The soil at Rodborough Common is rich in calcium and poor in nutrients, a combination that favours delicate plants over coarse and vigorous species. Rodborough Common is a very good example of limestone grasslands that we are so lucky to have around Stroud. We will learn what makes this Site of Special Scientific Interest so important and what kind of management grasslands need to create conditions favourable to wildflowers and butterflies.

For details and to book a place contact Ivi Szaboova on 01453 753358 or 07876 050878.

Landfill tax money is supporting the latest scheme run by Stroud Valleys Project. The environmental charity has been awarded £48,000 from Biffaward to restore the pond and surrounding grassland at Rackleaze, Cam.

Pond restoration with volunteers at RackleazeSVP project officer Richard Lewis explained: “This area has always been seen as a bit of a wasteland but is in fact a neutral wet grassland and there are not many of these left locally or nationally.

“It is an oasis for wildlife and is special as the land has never been tilled or improved.  We will be working on this project over two years and aim to restore the pond  and surrounding area where we hope to encourage otters and water voles and create a boardwalk for visitors to use .”


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Great Crested Newt If you want to see a modern-day dragon, head down to Stroud Valleys Project’s annual survey of Great Crested Newts in Stonehouse on Friday 29th (7.30-9PM) and Saturday 30th April (7-8.30AM).

Help SVP’s Green Team volunteers count Great Crested Newts, one of our local protected species. This annual survey is a rare opportunity to get a close-up view of newts and find out about their ecology.  We will set up newt-friendly traps on Friday evening, check them early on Saturday morning and release the newts back to where we found them.

Wear wellies and outdoor gear, and bring a torch for the evening session. No toilets or refreshments on site.

For details and to book a place contact Ivi Szaboova on 01453 753358 or 07876 050878 on the day of the event.


Two new community workers joined environmental charity Stroud Valleys Project last month to run their latest project called ‘Get Growing’. Funded by the Big Lottery Fund’s Local Food programme, it aims to support food growing in local Get Growing In Schoolsprimary schools. Emily Janke-Pearson, and Tamsin Bent who specialise in sustainable livelihoods and environmental education, will be working with 20 schools across the district setting up gardening clubs and encouraging pupils to grow and eat their own vegetables. 

“We are delighted to be running this project which reinforces the link between growing and healthy eating,” said Clare Mahdiyone, Director of Projects.  “It follows on from our successful pilot scheme in 2009 and we will be working with teachers, pupils and volunteers to create sustainable garden plots at all the schools”. 



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March is the time to start planting summer seeds so Stroud Valleys Project is setting up a seed swap at their eco shop in Threadneedle Street.

Seed swopLocal people are invited to come along and bring any surplus seeds to exchange with others. The seeds can be bought from their own gardens as long as they are clearly labelled.

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WEDNESDAY 9.2.11, 10am – 11.30AM

Would you like to learn more about the birds in your garden? Arm yourself with binoculars and come along to Hamwell Leaze for a spot of twitching. You might even see the resident kingfisher!

Bird_Watch_picBarbara Wood, a volunteer with Stroud Valleys Project, will join the Green Team to run a workshop on bird identification. Please bring binoculars if possible, and wear wellies.

Ivi Szaboova, SVP’s Biodiversity Officer, said: “Birds are a very useful indicator of our environment’s health as they are close to the top of the food chain. The workshop can help you learn to identify species which are most likely to visit your garden.”

Stroud Valleys Project’s Green Team volunteers would like to put out a call out to find Ms Alder whose black wallet they found at Hamwell Leaze, a greenspace in Cainscross. It contained a large amount of money and vouchers, and was handed in at Stroud Police Station.

Wallet teamBiodiversity Officer Ivi Szaboova said: “The Green Team volunteers were pruning a misshapen oak tree and cutting back willow branches by a footpath to improve access for local walkers when they came across the wallet. They were surprised to see that it still contained a substantial amount of cash and vouchers, all very wet. Usually we just find litter, or bottles and cans which we take away for recycling. We hope that someone will know Ms Alder and tells her to contact the Police Station.”

If you want advice about hedgehogs or would like to be part of the Green Team, contact SVP on 01453 753358.

Don’t let unwanted 2011 diaries and calendars gather dust on your desk, drop them off at Stroud Valleys Project office instead, so others can use them.

 The Diary Swap works like this: drop off unwanted 2011 diaries or calendars at Stroud Valleys Project. And if you need a new diary or calendar, pop into the SVP office at 8 Threadneedle Street on Stroud to get one. Simple! Saving resources and at the same time reducing the clutter on your desk. The swap will be running until the end of January. 

For more information please phone Ivi on 01453 753358.

Stroud Valleys Project is a limited company,
registered in England and Wales.    

Registered number: 2224016    

Registered charity number: 900107

Stroud Valleys Project,
8 Threadneedle Street,

Tel: 01453 753358

Fax: 01453 755641


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