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Welcome to the Friends of Charnwood Forest

To work towards the preservation of the countryside and local environment of Charnwood Forest Regional Park for the benefit of those who live within it, for those who visit, and for future generations.

Friends of Charnwood Forest is a society aiming to protect the natural beauty and amenities of the area known as Charnwood Forest. Membership is is open to all.

More details about what we do and who we are can be found here.


New Committee

At the 2021 AGM on 15 March we said goodbye to Paul and Pauline Day, and welcomed Jane Deamer and Ann Irving to the Commnittee, although Jane regrettably had to tender her resignation from 31 December 2021 due to personal issues.

Paul Day, having served on the Committee for 25 years, is taking a well-earned retirement; Marilyn Upstone (nee Palmer) has taken over as Chairman.

Next Meeting

Our next event will be on Wednesday February 23 when Dr. Jack Matthews of Oxford University will give a talk entitled Building a UNESCO Global Geopark in Charnwood Forest"

It will take place at Woodhouse Eaves Village Hall, 50 Main Street, Woodhouse Eaves, LE12 8RZ at 19:30. Members free; guests £3 payable on the door. Doors open 19:15.

Please do not attend if you have Covid-19 symptoms. Doors and windows will remain open to improve ventilation so you might like to dress more warmly than you might expect. Face coverings are now optional.



2021 Subscription Renewal

Your membership payment for 2020 also covers 2021, and there is no need for any payment this year. For new members: please complete a Membership Form and return to our Hon Treasurer with your cheque as indicated on the form. If you wish to arrange a Standing Order, please contact our Hon Treasurer, Kim Turner.

Our Membership Secretary is Felicity Manning.


Events and Programmes for 2021/22

here are details of future meetings, social events, outdoor visits, etc. of Friends of Charnwood Forest .

Previous Events

Here are details of some of our previous events, which includes some photographs from our 25th Anniversary Party.

Membership

We welcome all visitors to indoor events: most outdoor events are limited to members. Those wishing to join the Friends should download and complete the Membership Application Form.

We will use your email address to distribute information to members about our activities during the year. We use "Mailchimp" to distribute information to members; this means that your mail address will be held by "Mailchimp" in a database. To ensure Friends of Charnwood Forest emails reach your inbox, you may need to add mem@focf.org.uk (Friends of Charnwood Forest) to your Contacts or Safe Senders list on your system. If your membership details have changed, especially your email address, please contact Felicity Manning, our Membership Secretary.

Projects and Sponsorship

Since its inception, Friends of Charnwood Forest has been involved in several projects to enhance the local environment, involving the expenditure of several thousand pounds. More details can be found here.

We remain open to the idea of sponsoring further projects: if you identify one that you think may be suitable please contact the Chairman.

Charnwood Forest Development

Charnwood Forest was confirmed as a Regional Park in 2012.

Here is a map showing the park boundary (may take some time to load).

We are members of the Regional Park Stakeholder Group.

More information on the Regional Park is available here.

Charnwood Forest Landscape Partnership and Heritage Lottery Fund Grant

In 2017 the National Forest Company applied to the Heritage Lottery Fund for a £3M grant to enhance Charnwood Forest.

The Application stated "The Chronicles of Charnia" will celebrate the area's internationally important volcanic legacy. It will enable and encourage people to explore its rich landscape and diverse heritage. It will provide deeper engagement for residents and visitors, while contributing to the local economy. It will coordinate management at a landscape-scale to make Charnwood's heritage more resilient to growing pressures. Most importantly, it will create a greater sense of local pride, inspiring communities to restore the character of this special place".

It has a strap-line "Made by volcanoes, shaped by people".

In May 2020 the application, for £2.767M, was granted, and the "Charnwood Forest Landscape Partnership" was set up.

Here is their Christmas 2020 Newsletter.

Geopark

It is hoped to nominate part of Charnwood Forest as a "Geopark": until they have a full website setup, here is their Facebook Page.

Map of Charnwood Forest

Global Mapping has produced a nice map of Charnwood Forest, at a scale of 1:25,000. A copy of the first edition was sent to all Members in 2015; a second edition has now been produced. The map has won the Ordnance Survey Open Data Award at the British Cartographic Symposium. The judges said that the map is a great example of how open data can be used to create quality paper maps as well as the digital products and services that we are used to seeing. It is available by mail order from Mapstop and from Guidepost, and is due to be stocked by Agora in Woodhouse Eaves. It is also available at Bradgate Park Visitor Centre in the Deer Barn in the heart of the Park, usually open weekends, bank holidays and school holidays 11-3 winter months and 11-4 summer

Bradgate Park Management

On 1 July Marilyn Upstone and Toby Manning met with James Dymond, the new (and permanent) Director of Bradgate Park, to discuss items of mutual interest. Here are our notes of the meeting. We look forward to a fruitful relationship with the new Director.

We remain concerned about the Bradgate Park finances, currently running at a loss.

Stoneywell

Stoneywell

The National Trust's only property in Leicestershire, Stoneywell, lies a couple of miles north-west of Newtown Linford. Its official opening was on 11 March, 2015. Booking is essential; please telephone 01530 248040 or email Stoneywell@nationaltrust.org.uk. The Stoneywell website is at http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/stoneywell/.

Charnwood Forest Living Landscape

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust are promoting the idea of Charnwood Forest as a "Living Landscape" and not a set of individual isolated parcels of land. More information is available on their website.

Video of the Forest

An interesting 20 minute amateur video of Charnwood Forest has been produced by Patrick Leach, Bob Morgan and Martin Roy and is available here. Please note that FOCF is not responsible for the content of this video.

Newsletters

Between 2001 and 2018 we produced a regular Newsletter (see below). In 2018 we decided to discontinue producing the Newsletter.