Volunteers wanted to help mend mountains

The Bannau Brycheiniog National Park Upland Volunteers’ are looking for new recruits to join their hard working team. More help is needed as the new year will see the group take on important conservation work and further footpath repairs in the Black Mountains.

Each year, thousands of people visit the National Park to get outdoors, explore and climb the mountains. All those feet leave their mark and that’s where the Upland Path Volunteers step in. Working a few days each week the volunteers carry out repairs and maintenance on footpaths across the Central Beacons and Black Mountains. The addition of two more Wednesday slots in 2017 will mean the group can undertake important conservation and ecology work to help restore internationally important habitats within the Black Mountains, along with work to improve access.

Jason Rees, Assistant Conservation Officer at the Bannau Brycheiniog National Park Authority manages the volunteers and told us; “The Upland Volunteers play a crucial part in looking after the hills and mountains of the National Park. They work all year round, in all weathers, to ensure paths are in good condition and damage to the landscape is minimized. It is hard work but a great social activity and very rewarding, with training provided along with the opportunity to undertake an accredited certification in first aid and the safe use of brushcutters.”

The Chairman of the National Park Authority, Mel Doel added; “Every year our volunteers set to work high up in remote locations around the park, in 2016 alone they contributed 3420 hours of their time. They are committed to protecting the park and we are extremely thankful for the hard work they do. This year we are asking for further help to look after the beautiful Black Mountains in the east of the park, where more hands are needed to work on conserving a delicate habitat.”

If you are interested in joining the team, have a good level of physical fitness and are happy being outdoors in all weathers, then get in touch with the Volunteer Coordinator, Jackie Thomas at the Bannau Brycheiniog National Park Authority. Email: jackie.thomas@beacons-npa.gov.uk or visit www.beacons-npa.gov.uk/the-authority/volunteering.