The 'Cheltenham National Trust Volunteers Group' - known locally as the 'ANTS' (Active National Trust Squad), are based in the Cheltenham and Gloucester area and have been working at Trust sites in Gloucestershire for over 30 years. Most of our work takes place at countryside properties and we have recently visited :- Dovers Hill (near Chipping Campden), Littleworth Wood (Snowshill), Haresfield, the Sherborne Estate (near Northleach) and Woodchester Park. We have also worked at Crickley Hill, Newark Park (near Wotton-under-Edge), Westbury Court Garden and Rodborough Common.

                           
                       Volunteers ' Work Party' Programme   2017 -  ANTS 39th YEAR !
Our work days usually take place every third Sunday and we also have a good sprinkling of social events
and two open meetings a year for all Members to air their views. We produce a regular newsletter giving
full details of work days and social events, this info is also available on line www.cheltglosntc.org.uk
(and 'click' on 'ANTS')
       It is essential to book your place on a 'Work Party' with Tim or Russ - contact details below !
All tools are provided and all you need to bring are thorn proof gloves, waterproof clothing, good boots and enough food and drink for the day. 

If you are fit and would like to find out more or join us on one of our regular work parties, please contact           either  Russell Self on 01242 243714   or e-mail - ants.cheltntv@btinternet.com., 
                                          
or Tim Parker on 01242 522435    

Please bring enough food and drink for the day, together with suitable clothing and footwear. Tools will be available, supplied by the Rangers, and we can provide protective gloves if required.
Due to parking problems we will no longer meet in the centre of Cheltenham, so please let either Tim or Russ/Sally know if you are coming so that we can arrange enough transport and in case there is a last minute change of venue.  We aim to arrive at the worksites between 09:30 & 10:00.

                    Note:  It is not necessary to be a National Trust member to volunteer for the ANTS.


                                      
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                                                                       ANTS NEWS.

As promised in the last newsletter, we can now report that the group has now sponsored two more Belted Galloway cattle, which were born this year 2017. Antoinette was part of the new scheme of having cattle on various properties to "sort out" the vegetation. During her life she had 5 calves, the last being born 2009.  Each year the calves are named by a letter of the alphabet. 'A' was the first year of the scheme and in 2017 it is now 'K'.

Having agreed to sponsor two Belted Galloway calves, we have agreed their names should be 'Keltie' and 'Kantie'. The money was raised through fundraising, donations and some other sources - some of you bought jams and surplus cake from the AGM, which all contributed to the final sum. 

                           

On September 17th. we saw our two new calves and handed the cheque over to Matt Stanway, the 'Ranger in charge' of Rodborough, Sherborne, Westbury Court Gardens and Haresfield. We have carried out our work visits, at our varied schedule of venues. This Summer work has been mainly clearance work. widening of trackways and regenerating tree growth etc. With the average group size of ten people, this can be achieved quite quickly.  

By the time you read this, it will be the month to wish you 'Greetings' for Christmas and the New Year of 2018. 

Here's a 'New Years Resolution' - try a new activity & join us! - you would be very welcome.  Jane Gill                             

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                                                         WORK PARTY DATES for 2017
   

                                    8th  Oct     -   Haresfield                29th Oct     -    May Hill 

                                  19th  Nov    -   Sherborne               17th. Dec    -    Crickley Hill                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          **************************************************************************
                                                              

                                                     ANTS update 28/06/2017

Our three weekly work parties continue to visit different properties in the region, giving us a variety of activities and a sense of achievement each time.  
Horton Court Garden continues its restoration with Garlic, Elder, Bramble and Ivy to be removed. The latter two, mainly, as it is growing in the wrong place. Ebworth and Rodborough have also had visits. It was nice to see orchids on the grassland at Rodborough.
Unfortunately, our sponsored Belted Galloway Cow, Antoinette, after about 10 years, ended her life this year. The herd which now, has 
their own bull, has been built up over the years to about 70. We have now decided to sponsor the herd again, which will probably be two of the new calves born this year. Money has been raised from our bank account and financial gifts, while some members did some fundraising. At the moment we are still negotiating, but full information will be given in the next newsletter.

The group have had a weekend away in Cardiff and are now planning another trip for the Autumn. While 'socials' include our regular fish and chip or curry nights.                                      Jane Gill

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                                                         ANTS SOCIAL SCENE

Fish & Chip Suppers at “Popeyes” Queens Road, Cheltenham (near Railway Station) – The next dates will be Saturday, 4th November. The evenings start at 7:00 p.m. and you can either meet earlier at Tim’s abode (19 Libertus Court, Libertus Road, Cheltenham) or at the restaurant.

ANTS Weekends - research is underway for next year. The only possible destinations that have been suggested so far, are a Spring visit to Cardiff and an Autumn break to Harrogate. Please let me know if you have any more suggestions or objections to those received. More info will be available to those interested at future work parties.


PS – if anyone has suggestions for any further outings, meals etc would they please let me know.  As it will be our 40th Anniversary in February 2018, I am hoping suggestions to mark this auspicious occasion will come flooding in!!!        
Angie (01242 234157)

                                            







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