Students’ work gets results at local woodlands

Published on: 12 Jan 2016

Students have helped two local woodland groups make real progress towards their goals of improving the sites and opening them up for public access since the start of the new academic year in September.

Young volunteers from the University of the West of England’s GreenSpace team have been working alongside the groups that manage Sims Hill, near the Bristol Business Park, and Spatts Abbey Wood, near the MoD, holding regular workdays at both sites.

Those leading the projects say great progress has been made with students’ contribution, improving access and biodiversity, and they hope to continue the work and see more people from the community getting involved.

David Bell, chairman of the Splatts Abbey Wood Conservation Group, which also has strong links to Wallscourt Farm Academy, said: “The Splatts Abbey Wood Group is very excited with the progress that it has made in recent times and looks forward to the future with great optimism.
“The UWE GreenSpace project has been quite inspirational, with dedicated, hardworking students helping to contribute to their local environment and community. When I first raised doing this with the UWE Volunteering Department last year I had no idea it would blossom into such a great project.”

Dom Driver, chairman of Sims Hill Community Woodland, said the young volunteers’  work was already benefiting visitors. He said: “It’s great to have the UWE students back working in Sims Hill wood and we can see the results already, with more light coming through the trees and a new path opened up.”

The partnership is not just benefiting the woodlands as one UWE GreenSpace volunteer explains: “GreenSpace has taught me so much about what it’s like to put conservation into practice. I love doing my part for the environment amongst the rapid urban growth of the city.”

Anyone who would like to get involved with the projects at Sims Hill and Splatts Abbey Wood can email or

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