Wild About Devon Parish and Town Council November Newsletter: webinar tonight!, Dark Skies Week update, community updates, funding, events...

Local Nature Partnership

Wild About Devon Parish and Town Council Newsletter - November 2021

Wild About Devon is new initiative to help communities and Parish and Town Councils take action for wildlife and help tackle the Ecological and Climate Emergencies. We have set up the Parish and Town Council Wildlife Network to help P&TCs fulfil their statutory wildlife duty, restoring and enhancing local areas for wildlife. 

Only the named contacts from those P&TCs which have joined the network will receive these newsletters. Our website has lots of information, with useful links and contacts, to support those starting to, or currently taking action for nature. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and join our community Facebook group, to keep up-to-date with the latest news, funding opportunities, events, and more.

To submit an article for the next newsletter, please email katrina.crenol@devon.gov.uk (50 words + a pic).  

Devon Wildlife Community of the Year Awards 2021/22

Community action animation clip

Communities right across the county are taking action to restore and improve habitats for our wildlife. There are some fantastic projects and initiatives across the county. The Devon Wildlife Community of the Year Awards aims to encourage more communities to take action and to celebrate those communities that are having a real impact in giving Devon’s wildlife a helping hand.

Wildlife Parish and Town Council of the Year Award

There are four categories, including the Wildlife Parish & Town Council of the Year Award. To enter, you need to fill out an entry form and send it in, telling Devon LNP about your wildlife projects that have improved the wildlife value of an area, and resulted in a social benefit (further details can be found on the Devon LNP website). The competition is open from 15 November 2021 to 15 July 2022. Prizes are kindly donated by Devon Wildlife Trust and South West Water, with more to come.

Wild About Devon P&TC Wildlife Network Event


Initial planning is underway for a Wild About Devon Parish and Town Council Wildlife Network event for those signed up to this network. This is likely to be in the form of key topic talks and discussions on nature related issues.

We would like this to provide useful information for everyone, and so are requesting that you email Mike Waller (mike.waller@devon.gov.uk) with key topics to include. For example, best practice dealing with invasive species, or how to manage grass cutting and weeds. We will keep you updated as the organisation of the event progresses.

Devon Dark Skies Week 2021

starry sky

Devon Dark Skies Week ran across October half term, with two webinars and a virtual bat walk from Devon Bat Group.

Our two webinars, 'An Introduction to Moths and their Declines', and 'The Importance of the Night Sky and Getting Lighting Right' are available to watch on YouTube, and you can take a look at all the wildlife that we saw on the virtual bat walk on Facebook.

If there are projects or improvements tackling light pollution in your area, get in touch and we can share your successes as a case study.

Updates from across the county

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Devon Association of Local Councils (DALC) conference

Devon Local Nature Partnership were kindly invited by Cara Stobart to present at the DALC conference on 7th October. Mike (LNP coordinator) gave an overview of Parish & Town Council Wildlife Network (a strand of Wild About Devon) to showcase what the network offers for parish and town councils. This was well received and since then, there have been a more parish and town councils signing up to the network. Tessa Frost (from Chudleigh Council) also gave a fantastic talk in support of the network and what they’ve been doing to take action for wildlife in Chudleigh. Hopefully this was successful in inspiring a few councils to get out and give our wildlife a helping hand!

nature recovery declaration

Nature Recovery Declaration

The North Devon Biosphere are looking for Parish and Town Councils, as well as individual Councillors, to contribute to tackling the climate and ecological emergency by signing the Declaration. 

Join DCC, NDC, TDC and over 400 other individuals, businesses, schools and more across the Biosphere in signing the Declaration for nature’s recovery!  

If you have any questions, or would like to discuss this further, please contact Emily Willoughby: emily.willoughby@devon.gov.uk  

climate awareness day presentation

Climate Change Awareness Day success

Buckland Brewer was pleased to see a good turn out for its Climate Change Awareness Day on 23rd October. Three interesting, well-informed speakers, a lively debate and a good variety of exhibitors provided much food for thought for everyone there. The Parish Council will consolidate what it’s learnt from the event in the weeks ahead and is already establishing plans for water quality monitoring and tree planting schemes as a direct result of the day.

future farming resilience logo

Future Farming Resilience - Navigating the Agricultural Transition 

Devon County Council has received funding from Defra to help update farmers and landowners in Devon and Somerset on upcoming changes to funding support. 

This “interim” phase of the Resilience Fund runs until March 2022 and will target farmers and landowners in the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership area. The move away from Direct Payments will be a big change for farmers. This initiative will give a better understanding of what the phasing out of Direct Payments will mean for them and how they can improve their business. Register on a local 'Navigating the Agricultural Transition' workshop


Become a Councillor Tree Champion

The Woodland Trust works closely with local authorities on issues including threats from development, finding sites for trees, helping to develop local plans, and planning and environmental policies.  

The Trust is looking for Councillor Tree Champions to be the eyes and ears for woods and trees. You’ll work with them to increase awareness of the vital role of trees, hedges and woodland to make places better for wildlife and people.

Contact Rosie Walker, Woodland Trust External Affairs Officer RosieWalker@woodlandtrust.org.uk

broadclyst tree planting

Saving Devon's Treescapes

As we head into planting season, parish and town councils can get involved with Saving Devon’s Treescapes by:

  1. Hosting a free tree hub
  2. Planting a landmark tree (which can also link to the Queen’s Jubilee)
  3. Planting a community orchard

For more information email Rosie at rcotgreave@devonwildlifetrust.org

trees by river

Right Place Right Tree

Planting trees and increasing woodland cover are positive things we can do in response to the climate emergency and ecological crisis. The Right Place Right Tree online guidance for Devon, produced on behalf of the Devon LNP under its ‘Trees for Devon’ initiative, provides step-by-step guidance to help those planning tree planting and woodland creation schemes.

Funding Opportunities

Visit the funding page on our website to keep updated with the latest environmental funding opportunities available to you.

ITF logo

International Tree Foundation: UK Community Tree Planting

The International Tree Foundation is now accepting applications for grants towards community tree planting projects in the UK. Grants up to £6,000 are available to community-led initiatives that will conserve, restore and protect indigenous trees and woodlands, forests, habitats and associated biodiversity.

Application deadline: 16th December 2021

environment agency logo

Natural Environment Investment Readiness Fund

The Natural Environment Investment Readiness Fund has been established to fund nature projects in England which tackle climate change, create and restore habitats, or improve water quality. Organisations seeking investment for these types of nature projects are being urged to apply for the second and final round of this programme.

Application deadline for second and final round: 3 February 2022

Wild About Devon Webinars


Monitoring Our Seas webinar

Wednesday 24th November, 7-8pm

After some technical difficulties, we have rescheduled this webinar.

Our Wild About Devon community webinar will focus on the marine environment and citizen science, with Paul Naylor, a marine photographer, Jules Agate, from the Marine Conservation Society and Coral Smith, from Devon Wildlife Trust. Tickets are free to book online!

tree in tube

The Benefits of Trees webinar

Thursday 2nd December, 7-8pm

Wild About Devon's free community webinars continue with the Benefits of Trees. Jon Burgess, a Forester at Forestry Commission, Rosie Walker, Regional External Affairs Officer at The Woodland Trust and Rebecca Naylor, South West Promotion and Engagement Manager at Forestry Commission, will tell us more about woodland creation and protection.

ennis logo

Exmoor Non-Native Invasive Species Project – Film Premier and Update

Thursday 9th December, 7-8pm

The Exmoor Non-Native Invasive Species project team are joining the Wild About Devon community wildlife webinars for the exclusive premier of their new short film. They will also be giving an update on their work mapping and controlling invasive species within the National Park. Tickets are free to book.

Other Events

xmas market

Teignmouth Farmers' Market

Saturday 18th December

Regular Farmers’ market in the Triangle and the Salvation Army will be performing 10am-12.30pm.

The latest newsletter bulletin has been sent to you as you have expressed an interest in being kept up to date with the work of the LNP. We may also send out invitations to conferences and other events. If you no longer wish to be part of the P&TC Wildlife Network and would like to stop receiving emails you can do so by unsubscribing on our newsletter platform.

If you have content that you would like to have included in our next newsletter, put on the LNP website or shared via our social media channels please email us a short text (50 words) and include a picture.