February 2020 Task Day

Thank you to everyone who helped out yesterday and especially to the new volunteers who braved the weather.

BWAG Club Night – Bats in Kent

Thank you to everyone who came along to BWAG's first monthly club night. We had a fantastic turn out for Hazel Ryan's presentation, Bats in Kent. Thanks to Hazel for making the evening so informative and enjoyable. Also, thank you to all the new BWAG members who signed up on the night!

May 2005 – Formation of BWAG

The group initially started with six people who came together with the aim of stopping further destruction of our ancient woodland.

July 2005 – BWAG at the Kent County Show

BWAG manned a stand (well actually a table!) to promote the activities of the group. Many people signed our petition in support of action required to preserve Bredhurst Hurst.

6th April 2006 – MP Backs BWAG

Hugh Robertson MP visited Bredhurst on 6th April and was handed a 1500 signature petition demanding that action be taken to preserve our woodland. This has now been formally presented to Parliament.

19th April 2006 – Fly Tipping Clean Up Day

On 19th April we organised a fly-tipping clean up day. This was a huge success, with about 60 volunteers, tractors, trailers and a JCB! We removed over 100 tons of rubbish including tyres builders’debris and an Abbey National cashpoint machine!!!!

24th April 2006 – KWT & Bredhurst School

KWT visited Bredhurst Junior School, which was funded by BWAG. They gave a talk to the children on the wildlife to be found in our woods, then took the older children on a nature walk. They were to think about ideas for an art competition, with the winners to be announced at the Bredhurst Woodland Weekend in May.

May 2006 – Launch of BWAG Membership Scheme

We have grown from six founder members to nearly 200 and still rising!!! This includes many businesses. If you're interested in supporting us, please click here to see the membership options available.

27th & 28th May 2006 – The Bredhurst Woodland Weekend

This was a two day event…… On the Saturday the village hall was filled with nature and wildlife exhibits. Also on display were relics found within the village by a local metal detecting club and artwork completed by the children of Bredhurst CE Primary School. The prize winning artwork has been made into brass rubbing plaques that will be mounted ...

11th July 2006 – Kent Bat Club Visits Monkdown Wood

Shirley Thompson from the Kent Bat Club and almost 40 BWAG members visited Monkdown Wood for a night of bat spotting. The evening began with a short talk on bat identification and then a circular walk around Monkdown Wood, finishing back at Boxley Grange.

13th August 2006 – Pimms at Green Court

We held our first social event at Green Court in August. Over 80 people enjoyed Pimms and canapés and luckily the rain stayed away!! Many local businesses generously donated some lovely raffle prizes, which helped to make the evening a great success, raising over £700.

1st October 2006 – BWAG Sponsored Horse Ride

Thanks to Deana Foulds for arranging a very successful sponsored horse ride. A record number of riders took part, coming from as far as Ashford and Whitstable to support us. Over £1200 was raised for BWAG.

25th October 2006 – Badgers in Bredhurst

Dave and Dorothy Witherspoon from the West Kent Badger Group gave an informative and entertaining talk to nearly 50 BWAG members, providing a fascinating insight into the lives of badgers. WKBG & BWAG hope to jointly conduct a full study of Bredhurst Hurst shortly - watch this web site for news on how you can help……..

5th November 2006 – Autumn Clean Up

A very successful day, with support from around 30 volunteers and machinery, ensuring that Bredhurst Hurst is completely rubbish free!! Thankfully, we found no evidence of any recent fly tipping and the rubbish removed, including car tyres, builder’s rubble and scrap metal was mainly that which we were unable to clear in April.

18th November 2006 – Kent Wildlife Trust – Visit to Bredhurst Hurst

On 18 November 2006, KWT held a training day, Woodland Management for Wildlife, aimed at landowners and those responsible for managing woodland. The afternoon session included a visit to Bredhurst Hurst and several BWAG members joined in for a very enjoyable and informative afternoon

26th November 2006 – BWAG Presented with Volunteering Award

BWAG were one of over 650 nominations from across the county for the KCC 'Awards for Volunteering Excellence'. We were nominated for the award by Bredhurst Parish Council chairman and Deputy Lieutenant of Kent, Suresh Khanna. There were 24 'Winners' and 23 'Highly Commended' (47 in total) and BWAG were one of three winners in the environmental category. Several of ...

7th December 2006 – Christmas at Green Court

A good time was had by all drinking mulled wine, eating mince pies and listening to The Cantium Singers, a 50 strong Rochester based choir. We had a very good turn out and raised £916 for BWAG. It was great evening and quite a task supplying mulled wine and mince pies for nearly 200 - a big thank you to ...

25th March 2007 – Spring Badger Event

The West Kent Badger Group & BWAG held a very successful badger survey day. About 20 volunteers, assisted by badger experts, examined various sites for evidence of badgers. We all came away with a lot more knowledge of badgers and their habitats!

March 2007 – Coppicing Begins

BWAG has obtained a felling license to allow areas of the woodland, selected by Kent Wildlife Trust, to be coppiced over the coming two years. The first phase of this work is funded by the Kent Downs AONB Unit and KCC, Local Grants Scheme. Coppicing is essential to allow the woodland to rejuvenate and is beneficial to both plant and ...

March / April 2007 – Renovation of White Hill

White Hill, a favoured spot for fly tippers, has been smartened up! The work includes the clearance of existing fly tipping; new fencing, and the installation of a substantial metal barrier to deter fly tippers and the illegal access by off road vehicles. In addition, two bridle gates have been erected on the bridleway at the top of Strawberry Banks. ...

April 2007 – Byway Repairs

BWAG has secured £5000 from KCC Public Rights of Way to enable an initial section of the byway, from Day Valley to Arran Bank Stud Farm, to be resurfaced. This was required to allow easy access to the area for contractors, who are carrying out extensive maintenance work throughout the woodland - It will also make walking and horse riding ...

14th April 2007 – Adders in the Valley

About 25 members of BWAG and The Kent Reptile and Amphibian Group (KRAG) examined Day Valley, Strawberry Banks and the surrounding areas for evidence of reptiles. We found adders, lizards and slow worms. It was a beautiful sunny day - perfect conditions for a spot of reptile sunbathing! We even spotted two male adders in combat!! Thanks to Martin and ...

28th April 2007 – MP Hugh Robertson Supports BWAG Event

BWAG invited Kent Wildlife Trust to hold their 1st Local Wildlife Site Owners Day at Green Court, Bredhurst, courtesy of Stephen & Jane Page. The event was very well attended by landowners from across Kent and was opened by Hugh Robertson, MP. Hugh stressed the importance of protecting our environment and praised BWAG for its many achievements. During the morning ...

6th May 2007 – Spring Bird Walk

We had a glorious sunny day for our ‘Spring Bird Walk’, led by Owen Sweeney of the Kent Ornithological Society (KOS). It was very well attended and many sightings were recorded including Nightingale, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Long Tailed Tit, Skylark, Chaffinch, Thrush and Mistlethrush. See our Plants and Wildlife page for more information about what you may encounter in our woodland!

23rd June 2007 – Cream Teas & Clarinets

The rain stayed away (well for most of the afternoon!) and the gardens of Grove House looked splendid. Music was provided by Ad Hoc Ebony, a local clarinet quartet, which was thoroughly enjoyed by all. The event raised £581.00

13th, 14th & 15th July 2007 – BWAG at the Kent County Show

For the third year running BWAG had a promotional stand at the Kent County Show. Our pitch was kindly provided free of charge by the showground to support our community project and in recognition that part of Bredhurst Hurst falls within the parish of Detling. We had many visitors to the stand, some of which we had met at previous ...

28th & 29th July 2007 – BWAG at the National Woodland Trust Conference

Several BWAG committee members travelled to Grantham, Lincolnshire to the national Woodland Trust Conference. This was a packed weekend with a number of informative presentations, workshops and a tour of a local woodland. Speakers included Sue Holden, Chief Executive of the Woodland Trust and Tim Scoones, BBC Executive Producer of ‘Springwatch’. We also had speakers from France, Sweden and of ...

6th October 2007 – Bredhurst Fungi Foray

We had a good turn out, despite clashing with the Rugby World Cup Semi-Final!! Our fungi expert and guide Jo Weightman led us around the woodland and we discovered many common and not so common varieties. Click here for details and photos of some of the species found.

27th October 2007 – BWAG Visit to Berengrave Local Nature Reserve

Several BWAG members visited this fascinating site, designated as a LNR in 1984. We learnt much about the wildlife and history of the area from our guide and Chairman of Friends of Berengrave (FoB), Brian Baker. For more information about FoB visit www.friendsofberengrave.btik.com

1st November 2007 – BWAG Volunteers Install 45 Steps

BWAG volunteers, guided by Ian Hayes the KCC Public Rights of Ways Officer, installed 45 steps on footpath KH9. This path leads from Dunn Street to Monkdown Wood and, until the steps were in place, took walkers down a very steep and slippery slope - now this route can be enjoyed by all.

12th November 2007 – Royal Engineers Help With Path Restoration

The REs began path restoration on bridlepath KH56, which links byway KH94 to White Hill.  They provided their manpower and machinery free of charge, plus over £2000 towards the cost of materials.  BWAG secured an additional £18,000 and are grateful to Gallagher Aggregates Ltd for supplying the road stone at a vastly discounted rate. The REs were on site for one month, ...

24th November 2007 – Winter Bird Walk

About 15 BWAG members, led by Owen Sweeney of the Kent Ornithological Society (KOS) toured Bredhurst Hurst and the surrounding areas. Members were also very pleased to welcome several non-BWAG member bird enthusiasts who had seen the walk advertised in the local press. It was bitterly cold and unfortunately not much bird life was spotted - nevertheless a very enjoyable ...

3rd December 2007 – Gates Installed to Deter Illegal Access

After over two years of campaigning, BWAG has succeeded in restricting access to Bredhurst Hurst. Only permit holders and landowners are now allowed to use the byway. Gates have been installed at both the Bredhurst and Detling ends of the byway, which will hopefully deter illegal access to off-road vehicles and fly tippers. Legitimate (taxed, insured and road legal) off-road ...

6th December 2007 – Carols at Green Court

For the second year running BWAG held a carol concert at Green Court. Thanks to our hosts, Jane & Stephen Page and to the Cantium Choir for another excellent performance. We were also pleased to welcome the Mayor and Mayoress of Maidstone, Cllr Richard Ash and Mrs Christine Ash and thank them for officially opening the evening. Over 200 people ...

18th February 2008 – Rescue Mission for Orchids and Wildlife

An area of about 1 hectare, which was once chalk grassland, began to return to its former glory this week. Over the past 30 years or so this site, which used to be covered with wild flowers and herbs, had become neglected and overgrown making it uninviting for nesting birds and wildlife. Kent Wildlife Trust advised that the area needed ...

30th March 2008 Official Opening of Renovated Paths

Over 100 people attended the official path opening ceremony, conducted by Nigel Wheeler, High Sheriff of Kent, Cllr Paul Carter, Leader of KCC and Cllr Denise Joy, Deputy Mayor of Maidstone. This was followed by lunch at Arran Bank Farm. BWAG also received good coverage of the event on ITV Meridian News. Following the event, the High Sheriff of Kent granted ...

1st April 2008 – BWAG AGM

The BWAG AGM was held on 1 April 08 and 21 members attended. Neil Coombs, the guest speaker from Kent Wildlife Trust, spoke about the history of the woods from medieval times onwards. The new constitution was formally adopted and BWAG will now proceed with its application to become a registered charity. Our current status is as an Advisory Committee ...

20th April 2008 – KRAG – Guided Walk

The Kent Reptile and Amphibian Group (KRAG) held a survey day on 20 April. Despite the not too friendly weather about 25 members of KRAG & BWAG recorded a number of sightings including, adders, lizards and slow worms. The walk was led by Kevin Johnson and Dr. Rick Hodges of KRAG. A full report can be viewed at www.kentarg.org/content/view/53/45/

25th April 2008 – German TV – Filming Day at Bredhurst

ARD, a German TV company visited Bredhurst Woods on 25 April and spent the morning filming BWAG volunteers at work. The programme was screened in Germany on 5 May. Click here to view footage - all in German though! - Please email postmaster@vanessajones.plus.com if anyone has a translation………

26th April 2008 – Bluebells and Cream Tea

BWAG led a Bluebell Walk through Bredhurst Woods on 26 April. This was attended by approximately 40 members and their guests. The walk was followed by a cream tea at Arran Bank Farm, by kind permission of Pam and Dennis Newman. The event raised almost £200.

4th May 2008 – Spring Bird Walk

A spring bird walk was held on 4 May, led by Owen Sweeney of the Kent Ornithological Society (KOS). Owen, who has now led many walks for BWAG, gave an interesting tour of the woods pointing out birds, plants and other wildlife. It was very well attended and members requested that a Dawn Chorus walk be arranged - details coming ...

7th June 2008 – BWAG Visits the Valley Conservation Society – Tovil

BWAG Members visited the Loose Valley Conservation Area for a very interesting tour, led by Bryn Cornwall, Chairman of The Valley Conservation Society; a conservation group similar to BWAG. The Valley Conservation Society exists to "Protect and enhance the valleys of South Maidstone for the benefit of residents, wildlife and visitors." Founded in July 2000, the Society was formed initially ...

29th June 2008 – Butterflies of Bredhurst

We had an excellent turn out for this informative guided walk, led by Fred O’Hare, whose in depth knowledge of wildlife and nature made the afternoon very enjoyable. Unfortunately, we did not encounter many Butterflies, but we all learnt a tremendous amount about plants and other wildlife in the area. To view a list complied by Fred O’Hare and Issy ...

4th September 2008 – Kent Village of the Year (Environmental Action Category)

Thanks to the hard work of BWAG, Bredhurst has scooped another award. Competition judges said that the work of BWAG was of national significance in terms of environmental achievements and was the best environmental project they had ever encountered. BWAG representatives attended the awards ceremony and were presented with a cheque for £250.00. This will go towards the path restoration ...