Month: December 2018

Gloucestershire’s young people dig into rural life

L_R: Team programme participants: Fergus, Martyna, Natasha, Jack, Sam, Morgan, and Luis, with Programme Leader, Archie Morton. 

Cotswolds Conservation Board is celebrating the conclusion of a pilot rural skills training scheme in partnership with Young Gloucestershire and The Princes Trust. The ‘Team’ programme, offered by the Prince’s Trust, and facilitated by Young Gloucestershire, aims to help young people from urban areas in Gloucestershire prepare for work or further education with a range of practice-based activities.

Team is a nationally recognised programme set up by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. More than 70% of young people who complete the course go on to get a job or return to education or training within three months of finishing the programme.

The 12 week programme is for young people aged 16-25 who are not in employment, education or training (NEET). Participants get involved in a local community project, complete a short work placement, participate in a team challenge (involving caring for others), and work on their CVs and work skills. The course encourages group working, confidence building, and motivation.

The Cotswolds Conservation Board has been involved in a trial of a new element of the course which offers young people opportunities to get some hands-on rural skills experience. From thatching, to woodland management and bushcraft, to map reading, stone carving, dry stone walling, and blacksmithing – participants have been able to try a range of rural skills, at the same time as experiencing what it’s like to work outside in a rural context.

Many of the young people taking part do not have regular access to the countryside surrounding the towns and cities where they live, so this element of the Team programme is a valuable opportunity for them to explore what options might be available to them.

Edward Bonn, Rural Skills Officer at Cotswolds Conservation Board said, “It’s been brilliant introducing these groups of young people to our rural skills programme. Lots of them have never experienced anything like it before, and have really got stuck in to the sessions we’ve run for them. In particular, the blacksmithing, stone carving, and bushcraft sessions were very popular.”

Archie Morton, Programme Leader at Young Gloucestershire said, “Including rural skills in the Team programme is new for Young Gloucestershire – but we feel it’s a valuable addition. This time round was a pilot – so our focus now will be on seeking funding to continue being able to allow young people to broaden their skill set and experience.”

If you or your organisation is interested in finding out more about how to contribute to funding this valuable programme, please contact Simon Smith (Cotswolds Conservation Board) at or Archie Morton(Young Gloucestershire) at

Call for Projects in the vicinity of pylon line ZF2 (Upper Coberley to Alderton)

National Grid Landscape Enhancement Initiative (LEI)


The Cotswolds Conservation Board has issued a call for projects for the National Grid Landscape Enhancement Initiative.

This £24 million grant scheme offers awards of up to £200,000 for projects to enhance landscapes containing or impacted by National Grid’s existing electricity transmission infrastructure.

Only the Board can apply to the National Grid for this funding and we are inviting partners to put forward projects.

The Board has selected pylon line ZF2 which runs between Coberley and Alderton for our first call for projects as it is judged to have the highest impact of any line within the Cotswolds AONB.

The deadline for submitting expressions of interest to the Board is the 1st February 2019 for projects commencing in December 2019.

Next steps / essential documents:

Anyone with a project idea is encouraged to talk to Simon Smith the Board’s Project Development Officer at