Videos of Past Events

Below are some of the talks we’ve hosted recently – all of these videos are either hosted on the Avon Needs Trees Youtube channel or the channel of Friends of the Marden Valley.

  1. Celebrating the Woodland Dawn Chorus with Steve Oakes – 18.05.22
  2. History of Pewsham Forest with Nick Baxter – 24.03.22
  3. Butterflies of Morgan’s Hill with Nick Self – 03.08.21
  4. Pollinators with Mike Garrett – 08.06.21
  5. Tree Planting, Carbon and Climate – 11.05.21
  6. Fish and Friends: Wildlife in the River Marden – 13.04.2021
  7. The State of Our Rivers: Pollution in the Marden and Bristol-Avon Catchment – 09.03.2021
  8. Are We Losing the Opportunity For a Green Recovery? – 15.02.2021
  9. Birds of the Marden Valley: Challenges They Face – 04.02.2021
  10. History of the Marden Valley: The River, the Canal and the Railway – 29.10.2020
  11. Chris Goodall: What We Need To Do Now – 14.10.2020

1. Celebrating the Woodland Dawn Chorus with Steve Oakes – 18.05.22

Steve is a long term member of South Wilts RSPB and knowledgeable educator on the wonderful world of birds and birdsong. In this talk hosted with Friends of Marden Valley, he shares an exploration of the woodland dawn chorus.

2. History Of Pewsham Forest with Nick Baxter – 24.03.22

Nick Baxter is a history enthusiast, passionate about the real history of people and places in Wiltshire, with a desire to encourage free-thinking and debate around our exciting and dramatic past. https://wiltshirehistoryman.org.uk/

Nick Baxter spoke to us about the history of Pewsham Forest, described how it began and what shaped it; how it ended with deforestation in the 17th century, and what has happened to it since. He shared with us too, of the fascinating characters – Kings, politicians, monks and outlaws – who played a part in the Forest’s history and how, in the 18th century, the ‘new improved’ London to Bath Road passed through the forest, followed by the Wilts and Berks Canal and the railway from Chippenham to Calne, changing the landscape for ever.

2. Butterflies of Morgan’s Hill with Nick Self – 03.08.21

Nick Self is a Wild Landscapes project officer with Wiltshire Wildlife Trust and warden at Morgan’s Hill nature reserve and will give us a fascinating virtual guide through the butterfly life at this beautiful site.

Morgan’s Hill is a Wiltshire Wildlife Trust nature reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest known for its wildflowers and butterflies. This superb chalk grassland SSSI sits at the head of the Marden Valley and is awash with butterflies during the spring and summer months. One of the rare, but characterful species of butterfly that resides there is the Duke of Burgundy. Others to be seen include the Adonis, Chalkhill, Common and Small blues as well as the Marsh Fritillary – one of the UK’s most endangered species of butterfly. The reserve is a magnet for moths such as the Mother Shipton, named after a Yorkshire witch because its wing pattern is thought to resemble an unpleasant face.

3. Pollinators with mike garrett – 08.06.21

4. Tree Planting, Carbon and Climate – 11.05.21

5. Fish and Friends: Wildlife in the River Marden – 13.04.2021

Aquatic ecologist and ANT trustee Harriet Alvis, and Associate Professor of Ecosystem Services at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) Dr Mark Everard joined us to discuss what lies beneath the surface of our rivers. They addressed how the fish, mammals, birds, invertebrates, amphibians and others who make up the aquatic ecosystem interact.

Harriet shared her passion for fish, talking about which types of fish you can expect to find in the River Marden and discussing how they co-exist with other aquatic life in a sustainable river system. Mark shared his knowledge of river wildlife in the context of a “wider basket of ecosystem services” and the connections between our activities and nature’s vital life support systems.

6. The State of Our Rivers: Pollution in the Marden and Bristol-Avon Catchment – 09.03.2021

Simon Hunter from Bristol Avon Rivers Trust and Zoe Hancock from Wessex Water addressed the issues of local water quality and river pollution.

With the water quality of our national rivers at such a low, do you want to know more about the situation close to home? How is pollution affecting your local rivers? In 2020 Environment Agency figures revealed that only 14% of English rivers are of good ecological standard and that no river has achieved good chemical status. These devastating figures show that pollution from sewage discharge, chemicals and agriculture are having a huge impact on river quality. Who is monitoring this locally and what is being done?

The second part of this talk is also available on the Friends of the Marden Valley Youtube channel.

7. Are We Losing the Opportunity For a Green Recovery? – 15.02.2021

ANT Chair Nikki Jones gave a presentation about what we have done with our small window of opportunity to ensure a green recovery following the coronavirus pandemic. She talked about new technology that is being funded, old industries that are collapsing, whether these developments are taking us in the right direction and whether they are enough.

8. Birds of the Marden Valley: Challenges They Face – 04.02.2021

At the start of February we co-hosted a talk with Friends of the Marden Valley about the bird species living in the area around our first site Hazeland, and what challenges they face. The evening featured Matt Prior, Chairman of Wiltshire Ornithological Society, and Independent Ornithologist Nick Adams, who is also a member of the Wiltshire Raptor Group.

Huge thanks to Tim Havenith of Friends of Marden Valley for solving some technical issues, which allow this video to exist online at all!

9. History of the Marden Valley: The River, the Canal and the Railway – 29.10.2020

In October 2020 we co-hosted a talk with Friends of the Marden Valley about the history of the valley, focusing particularly on the canal, the railway and the river that run through it. That talk is now available in three parts on Friends of the Marden Valley’s Youtube channel.

10. Chris Goodall: What We Need To Do Now – 14.10.2020

Avon Needs Trees hosted an evening discussion with author and economist Chris Goodall about his book ‘What We Need To Do Now’. This was initially planned to be two public talks – one in Bristol and one in Chippenham – both to be held in March 2020, but they had to be cancelled due to the coronavirus.

Chris is one of the UK’s leading thinkers on the climate crisis, green technologies and fossil fuels. In particular, Chris is a close observer of developments in ‘green hydrogen’ and explained the implications for our build-out of renewables and for our heating and transport sectors.

Chris also presented his thoughts on how we will tackle the really high-emission sectors of clothing, aviation, steel and cement. A change of land-use is essential but how will we feed 8 billion people? And most fundamental of all, are these questions just for government or does individual action matter?