With many major events in 2012, the Olympics, the Silver Jubilee and Sustrans FestiVol, quite apart from our own personal committments, it has been difficult to formulate a cohesive plan for the coming year.
In 2011 our two public rides were less successful than in previous years, partly due to bad weather.
We have therefore decided to run only one public ride this year, that being the Etwall BBQ, and that will be on Sunday July 8th. Although the Etwall Leisure Centre is now run by a private company, they have agreed to our use of the Centre and free swimming for participants on the ride.
The Sustrans FestiVol comes to our neck of the woods (or should I say "forest") in July and we will be leading some of the rides.
We have several Rangers Only Rides in mind but many of the dates are yet to be confirmed.
Trip to Stanifold Railway on 31st March.
Reconnisance Rides for FestiVol.
Ride to Tissington Well Dressing on 17th May.
Trip to Birmingham and canal ride to Knowle.
Official Opening of the Longhorse Bridge.
Monsal Trail Ride.
Sky Ride in Leicester.
Festival of Leisure in Swadlincote.
Possible re-run of Camp Conkers in September.
With regard to workdays the plan is more obvious and immediate.
Throughout what remains of the Winter, the Community Payback Teams will continue the hedgecutting effort from Mickleover towards Etwall, coming along on most Tuesdays and Saturdays, and we will follow behind with a series of bonfires to dispose of the debris.
We are arranging further work by the Payback Teams at the Paddock end of the Breadsall Greenway to remove all vegetation from alongside the path, where it is unsighlty and a trap for litter, so that we can convert the verges to mowable grass.
We have several seat installations in progress at present, these being ...........
The Don Amott Seat on the Hilton Greenway requires minor finishing to complete this week, as does the new Sleeper Seat installed by the Payback Team last week. A new seat will be installed on the Breadsall Greenway this coming Sunday. All three seats have come for free, either by sponsorship or the fact that we have stocks of suitable timber in store. We also have a ready made but rather fragile garden seat in store and are looking for a suitable site for it, where it is least likely to be vandalised.
Also we have materials to make another sleeper seat for installation by the Payback Team.
Last year's bird nest box programme at Etwall was very succesful, with 15 boxes being sponsored by local residents and over half the boxes being used by the birds. The problem was having the boxes constructed by a local college which was difficult to administer and it will be quicker to construct the boxes ourselves in future. We have sufficient timber in hand to make another 15 boxes and propose to install these at Mickleover with sponsorship by local people at £5 per box.
The above is additional to our routine activities as follows ...........
Patrolling our designated area of South Derbyshire.
Taking measures to counteract the problems of litter, dog fouling, vandalism, graffiti and illegal motorcycling on the off road paths.
Keeping the paths safe and clear of debris and cutting back excessive vegetation as necessary.
Maintaining and where necessary, improving the level of signing on our NCN Routes.
Liaising with local authorites, the public, neighbouring Ranger Groups and Sustrans HQ.