Monday, 18 December 2017

A group of our members recently attended a presentation at the Veolia base at Four Ashes. Veolia have given our group £560 for us to purchase tools for the maintenance of the hill.  We were one of 8 groups who were given a grant. 41 groups had applied for the grants so we feel this was a huge achievement.Veolia have been keen to hear about our work and their communications manager may join us on a future litter pick.
Veolia have open days and we will pass on details of these when we know the dates as their waste management plant is very interesting and worth visiting to find out what happens to waste that is put into the non recyclable rubbish bins. The plant generates electricity. Veolia stressed that recycling is always preferable and using the non  recycling bins should be a last resort even though they generate electricity from the non recyclable waste.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

We have been successful with a bid to Tescos bags of help scheme for a heathland restoration scheme project on the hill! 
Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its community funding scheme, which sees grants of up to £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – all raised from carrier bag sales in Tesco stores – being awarded to local community projects.
Bags of Help offers community groups and projects across the UK a share of revenue generated from carrier bag sales in Tesco store. The public will now vote in store during 2nd January to 28th February on who should receive the awards.
We will need votes during January and February so folks keep asking for the plastic tokens and putting them into the section with our name on it. Votes mean money to help us with this stage of restoring the heathland.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

The following message was received from the clerk to the Trustees
I am writing to thank you and all the volunteers who supported the recent spreading of the heather brash.  It was a pity that the weather wasn’t good but I am sure that between us the remaining brash will be spread at some point.  Perhaps you  would be good enough to pass on our thanks and also best wishes for Christmas and New Year to all the members of Friends of Etching Hill.  Regards - Shirley

Saturday, 25 November 2017

The work on the heathland restoration laying heathers on our trial area went well. We managed to avoid the rain as it started just as we were finishing!
Thank you to everyone who turned out to help.

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Heather planting work party for restoration of the heathland.

We have been asked to help with laying the new Heather on the patch that we cleared over the last few weeks.
We will be organising a work party on 
Tuesday 21 st November at meet 2 pm at the church hall. 
We will provide refreshments after the work tea and cake.
We hope you can come along and join us as we need as many helpers as possible.
Looking forward to seeing you.

(Note the time as we usually meet in the mornings and this is an afternoon event.)

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

The Friends of Etching Hill have been working closely with the local Police, the Cannock Chase Council and the Trustees to the hill and have replaced a notice board recently damaged by vandalism. 
The Chairman of the Friends of Etching Hill said he can't understand why someone would damage anything on the hill as it has been enjoyed by people of all ages over the years and he hopes that it will remain a beautiful place for future generations to visit and appreciate. 
The police have reminded people that if anyone finds any antisocial behaviour they can ring 101 or if there is any criminal damage or vandalism taking place they can ring 999.

Sunday, 5 November 2017

The work party for the preparation of land before the heathers are planted. We had around 10 volunteers who turned up for the event. Thanks go to everyone who came along.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Heathland restoration working party 
The Trustees have asked our group to support them with health land restoration preparation work. This should involve raking the area prior to the Heather brash being laid.
We have fixed a date for a working party of
Saturday 28 th October at 11.00 meeting at the church hall
Refreshments will be provided, bring a rake if you have one otherwise just come along anyway. Many hands make light work!

Also don't forget our evening meeting in October is on Thursday 19 th at 7.30 pm at the church hall when we have a speaker on willow weaving.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

The Trustees have asked whether we would help pull out the Rosebay Willow Herb on the hill at our next litter pick. This is part of the Heathland restoration and their ecological advisor has suggested this. They don't want it to reach seeding stage as this creates more problems in restoring the Heather. Our next litter pick is on Saturday 16 th September 11.00 at the church hall - so in the meantime if you take a walk on the hill perhaps you can pull out a little each time and if we all do that then we can keep it down. For those who don't know - this is what it looks like.

Competition Time

We want your pictures of the hill or from the hill. Send them in to our Facebook page - Friends of Etching Hill .
The photo with the most likes each month will become " Photo of the month". There is no prize for this but when the charter fair comes round there should be 11 photos for the public to vote on for the overall winner.The overall winner will receive a small prize.
Happy Snapping!

Rules for photo competition
All entries are to be sent in to the Facebook page.
1st August 2017 is the start of the competition
8pm two days before the Charter Fair will be the closing date for the competition.
The picture with the most likes at 8pm on the last day of each month will become the photo of that month.
Any likes received after 8pm on the last day of the month will not count towards any voting.
The exception to this is the month of the charter fair when entries and votes can be submitted up to 8pm two days before the Charter Fair.
All the monthly photo highest scorers will be displayed at the Charter Fair where the public will have the opportunity to vote for their favourites. The public votes will NOT be added to any likes from Facebook as it will be an independent round of voting.
The overall favourite voted by the public at the Charter Fair will win a small prize. This will be based on votes made on the day in person not on line.
In the event of any dispute  regarding likes or entries the decision of the Facebook page manager is final.
In the event of equal likes or votes being gained by photos the committee of the Friends of Etching Hill will decide which single entry will become the photo of the month. The decision of the committee is final.
All photos must be of the hill or taken on the hill and can include any subject matter.
If there are any people in the photos it is the responsibility of the photographer to ensure the people consent to the photos being used or in the event of this being children, that their responsible adults consent. The Friends of Etching Hill take no responsibility for photos submitted.

Monday, 12 June 2017

Party night 2017

Our party on Saturday night was a great success bringing people of all ages together to celebrate the work our group had achieved over the past years culminating in the restoration of the views with the help of the Trustees and the Tescos funding.
Phil and Mark worked hard all evening with their disco and the staff at the tennis club looked after us well.
Apart from our members and guests, a number of local councillors, the fire cadets and our newly re elected MP Amanda Milling attended the evening. We had around 60 people present. We thank everyone for coming and for all the help and support we have received as a group.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

links to useful information

Here are some useful links to walks from the Mount
Chase Fit have produced these lovely photgraphed walking path leaflets

Enjoy them!

Also check out this video on YouTube with the mount seen from a drone
Following our A.G.M. We would like to welcome Mike Sutherland to our committee. All other members remain the same. Chris and Geoff have said they would like to stand down at the next A.G.M. in 2018 as they will have completed 7 years then. They will continue to support the group and the committee. We would ask anyone reading this to consider whether they would like to join our committee or carry out these roles next year.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Our our A.G.M. Will take place on Thursday 18th May at 7.30 at the church hall. We hope everyone will come along and let us know what you think about the work we have done and what you would like us to do over the next year.
We also welcome anyone who would like to stand for a post on the committee. We have had a vacancy over the past year. Being on the committee means you can help to shape our work further so please consider it as we welcome new opinions.

Monday, 13 March 2017

2017 our first litter pick of the year

The litter pick was a huge success.  We had 58 people turn up! Thank you to Sian for publicising the event and to Phil for taking away the rubbish. We would like to thank everyone who came to support us. Particular thanks go to the new people who came along. Hopefully they found that we are a friendly group and will join us again for future meetings and litter picks. Thanks to all those who helped in the kitchen to get the refreshments out quickly for all the hungry volunteers.
Thanks to all the young people who came with their families and to the fire cadets who worked very hard. Young people are the future and too often they get bad press whereas we have found many keen young volunteers who have been polite and interested in maintaining the hill.

 We would also like to thank the people who spent time helping to clear the brash and put the chippings onto the paths. This is has been necessary following the trees being thinned. 
         We may have further work parties depending on the needs of the project.
Finally, thanks to all those who donated their lovely photos to our groups archives. We were given some very special pictures including some taken from a drone, showing how wonderful the hill looks from above.
The hill is tidy again and looks amazing following the recent work. We urge people to support our group in trying to keep it that way. If anyone is concerned that there may be anti social behaviour on the hill please ring 101 as the police will respond in tackling the issues.
As a result of the work done we have had lots of favourable comments and people have said they like the fact that they can now see the Derbyshire hills again. The Trustees are also very pleased that they have been able to work with us to achieve these results as a joint venture. They have thanked our group. With the community working together we can achieve so much and 2017 has had a good start so far!
As this is starting to sound like an Oscar acceptance speech- let's look at a couple of donated photos
         Thanks to Gillian for this photo

See below one of the photos taken by drone - thanks to Eddie for this.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Litter pick

We have a litter pick next Saturday -4th March. Meet at 11.00 at the Etching Hill Church Hall. This time there may be extra hands needed to remove the extra litter exposed by the clearance work so come along and bring friends! Also if anyone feels up to shifting brash onto the muddy paths they could help with this on the day. 

Any members who would like to have the logs, they can be taken away after the litterpick. As the contractors are likely to be working on the hill during the coming week we ask that people do not collect them until  after the litterpick on Saturday as it may interfere with the work programme. We also ask that no one takes a chainsaw onto the hill as we are not covered for this.

Refreshments will be provided for the work group on Saturday. 
If anyone wants to bring a wheelbarrow to shift brash this may help, otherwise all equipment is provided

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

We have been very busy recently sorting the work out for The Openview Project. We are pleased to announce that Tescos have given us money to start the work and in order to progress this before the birds start nesting, we have a contractor starting on Friday of this week. Once the selected trees are down we can then start restoring the heathland.

We are pleased that this long awaited and much needed work can now take place thanks to the Tescos Bags of Help scheme and the cooperation of the Trustees who have been very supportive of our ideas and keen to help us in every way possible.

We have a couple of dates for diaries although we are still finalising our plans for the  year.

March 4th is our first litterpick meet at Etching Hill Church Hall at 11.00 am refreshments and all equipment provided. We may need as many people as possible on this day as there will be additional work in clearing wood or brash.

March 23rd is our first speaker who will talk about Dragonflies. Meet at Etching Hill Church Hall at 7.30 pm  refreshments provided.

Friday, 3 February 2017

Welcome to 2017

We are busy putting together a new programme of events for everyone for 2017 and so far we have a couple of dates for your diaries.

March 4 th we have a litterpick starting at 11.00 at Etchinghill Church Hall. Everyone is welcome and we provide all the equipment and refreshments.

March 23 rd  we have a speaker on dragonflies. This starts at 7.30 pm at Etchinghill Church Hall. Everyone is welcome. There is no charge and refreshments will be served.

We are still waiting for the Tescos Bags of Help money to be sent so that we can start on the project to restore the views and manage the trees.

It is going to be a busy year and we look forward to being part of activities that we share as a group of friends looking after the Hill. There is a fantastic community spirit that brings us all together. We always welcome new people joining us for our events - so just come along!