At the time of writing, the reservoirs have been open to the public for over four months and Welsh Water have reported over 100,000 visits to the site – over three times the number expected when they opened. We hope that you have all had the opportunity to visit, enjoy the experience and meet some of our volunteers.
The media launch in July attracted a lot of attention and was covered extensively on TV, in print and on the web.
For information about the attractions at the reservoirs and how to book onto activities, please visit: https://lisvane-llanishen.com/ .
Friends’ volunteers have played an important role in preparing and maintaining the site and welcoming new visitors over these few months. We wish all our members a good holiday and look forward to seeing many of you visiting and volunteering again in 2024.
In 2023 our volunteers have, for example, built dry stone walls, planted islands for birds, improved habitats for wildlife and surveyed the diverse fungi on the reservoir site. Volunteers have also acted as stewards and site ambassadors, helping visitors get the most from their experience at the reservoirs.
Your Committee is, from left to right, Ros Reilly (Membership Secretary), Fiona Liddell (Secretary), Amit Jain, Rajeev Sharma, Peter Fullerton (Chair), Sandra Veasey (Deputy Chair and Safeguarding Officer), Julie Lawrence (Treasurer). We also have an active Volunteer Working Group and are grateful to the other members who are on that group. Please use our membership email if you want to get in touch with us: firstname.lastname@example.org
We’ve scheduled regular drop-in sessions in the Visitor Centre café for those interested in finding out more about the Friends group and the volunteering opportunities offered. Future dates include Saturday 27 January, Wednesday 28 February and Saturday 30 March.
Recently, your Committee have prepared a Code of Conduct for volunteers, this is available on our website: Code-of-Conduct-FoCR_Nov2023.pdf (friendsofcardiffreservoirs.org). We have also started discussing a new Memorandum of Understanding with Welsh Water, submitted a number of grant applications and are developing ways of working with youth organisations. We also plan to discuss the option of becoming a charity and will present a proposal to the Annual General Meeting in the summer.
A new project in development is to capture digital memories of the reservoirs in years gone by, in collaboration with Welsh Water, Digital Communities Wales and Peoples Collections for Wales. We also plan to offer opportunities for our volunteers to host guided walks around the site.
Reservoir Action Group
As well as our immense appreciation for the Reservoir Action Group (RAG)’s successful campaign to save the reservoirs for the public, we are expecting a substantial donation following the dissolution of RAG at their meeting in October. We have agreed with RAG that the donation is used to set up a specific fund earmarked for projects that promote wider access to the site to benefit the wider community – thus enabling individuals and groups from broader areas of Cardiff and those from disadvantaged backgrounds to engage with nature and take part in sailing, other water and land based activities available at the reservoirs.
We now have over 300 members. Details of how to join the Friends group are on the Membership section of our website and costs just £5 per year (or £10 for a household). We are keen to include more members on our Working Groups, so please contact us if you would like to help. Anyone with IT, Welsh translation, marketing and/or communications skills would be particularly welcome (to support our website, social media and Welsh language communications).
Cardiff Local Nature Partnership
Cardiff Local Nature Partnership is developing a Local Nature Recovery Action Plan (NRAP), which will set out what needs to be done to restore and improve nature in Cardiff. The results of these activities will help shape the NRAP, the first draft of which will be completed in spring/summer 2024.
This plan is for everybody in Cardiff and we were invited to get involved in identifying the priorities and actions for the Plan. Several members attended consultation sessions last month. Here is a link to an online survey if others would like to be involved: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/CNRAP . Responses are requested by 19 January 2024.
Numerous volunteering opportunities continue to be offered to members in collaboration with Welsh Water. There is a broad span of activities including woodland management, site conservation, promoting wildlife diversity and wildlife surveys as well as the regular “ambassador” patrols. Over 170 of Friends’ members are already registered on the volunteer system (Team Kinetic) and places on most of these activities get snapped up quickly, so keep checking Team Kinetic and/or emails to see what is coming up if you are keen to take part.
We try to email members about volunteering opportunities on a regular basis. These opportunities all appear on the volunteer management system (Team Kinetic). The best way to book onto these opportunities is by logging on to the system (Login Page (teamkinetic.co.uk). Please email email@example.com if you wish to enrol on Team Kinetic for the first time.
If you have any difficulties with Team Kinetic, Richard, our IT support is happy to help (email: ITsupport@friendsofcardiffreservoirs.org ).
Our current social media accounts are: Instagram: fofcreservoirs; X(twitter) @FofCReservoirs.