Bedfordshire Youth Rangers: Summer 2021

Bedfordshire Youth Rangers: Summer 2021

PJB Photography

Sarah Cowling reveals what the Bedfordshire Youth Rangers have been up to and how you can join in!

Having a background in secondary school teaching one of the highlights of my role here at BCN is organising the Youth Ranger sessions. To play a small part in the lives of the young people in the group and to watch them grow in confidence through the years. It is great that many of them still enjoy coming along to sessions as young volunteers as and when university holidays allow.

YR Totternhoe

For the last 5 years I have been responsible for the North Chiltern’s Chalk group of Youth Rangers but with a little shift around it has been a great pleasure to merge this group with the Flitvale Youth Rangers to make a new combined Bedfordshire Youth Ranger group. Super volunteer Nigel and I are looking forward to working together to deliver a range of sessions across our chalk and greensand reserves and giving the young people a greater breadth of experience of different habitats and practical management techniques. Since April we have had a Back to Nature Walk on Blow’s Downs, some bracken pulling to help the heather out at Cooper’s Hill and Maulden Wood and most recently some ragwort removal and butterfly surveying at Totternhoe.

Youth Ranger

I am so proud of all of our Youth Rangers but would like to introduce you to Ethan who has recently been awarded his John Muir Explorer Award for volunteering. Not only does Ethan travel down to south Bedfordshire from Peterborough for our sessions (special mention should be made of his marvellous mum here too) but he also attends the Peterborough Youth Rangers, is a young volunteer for his local Watch group and was a regular volunteer at the pop-up shop in Peterborough in 2019. Beyond this, Ethan has helped with many conservation projects both across the whole WTBCN area, including wet planting at the Great Fen, and coppicing at Thorpe Wood and further afield, including some work with the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust.  SO proud of this young man – well done Ethan!

Of volunteering Ethan says: “Volunteering with wildlife trust has allowed me to learn a wide range of information from how to complete specific tasks to learning why the management happens. Being a young volunteer also has allowed me to meet people my age with similar interests that I would not have met otherwise. Also another positive is that you feel like you have achieved something after each session both due to the work that we have done but also from the progress towards the John Muir awards.”

Youth Ranger surveying

Credit: Sarah Cowling

If you are, or know someone who is, 12-18 years old and enjoy meeting like-minded people whilst picking up new skills and making a positive impact on your local environment then why not come along to find out what we’re all about. For more information please visit or email Sarah on


 Dates for your Diary:

Sat 25th Sep 10am-12pm Scrub clearing at Blow’s Downs

Mon 25th Oct 10am-12pm– tbc

Sun 21st Nov 10am-12pm tbc

Mon 20th Dec 10am-12.30pm Scrub clearing at Totternhoe