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Friends of Gledhow Valley Woods
News and Events

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What's New Archive for 2019

17 May 2019
FREE "Heritage on Your Doorstep" Events

The Friends of Gledhow Valley Woods have helped to organise a series of free events in Gledhow Valley Woods over the next few months. Activities include Bird Song Walks, Gledhow Heritage Walk, Kids Bush Craft Session and a Fungi Walk.

Please see the Dates for your Diary section for more information.

16 May 2019
20th FGVW Family FunDay Coming Saturday 15 June 2019

The Friends of Gledhow Valley Woods invite you to their 20th Annual Family FunDay.

The FunDay brings local people together for an afternoon of fun, activities and entertainment focussing on the local woodland and the plants and wildlife that live there. There are loads of displays, activities, games and entertainments to keep the whole family busy, not to mention home-made refreshments and live music!

When & where:

  • Saturday 15th June 2019 (1.30pm - 5.00pm)
    Grassland area adjacent to Gledhow Valley Road and Allerton Grange Way.

Activities include:

  • Live music from The Friendly Brass Band
  • Sam's Safaris
  • Sandhills Alpacas
  • Hope Pastures
  • Birds of Prey
  • Climbing Wall
  • Bees and beekeeping
  • Plant sale
  • Book stall
  • Circus Skills
  • Nest box making
  • Grand raffle
  • Tin Can Alley
  • Firefighters
  • Hook-a-Duck
  • Face painting
  • Start birdwatching
  • Tombola
  • Home-made refreshments
  • Find out what the Friends are doing to enhance your local woodland and lake.
  • FGVW gift stall including coasters, mugs, postcards, greetings cards, badges, etc.
  • ...And much more!

Please can you help?

We badly need volunteers who can help out on the FunDay either by bringing food for the Refreshments Stall, books or DVDs for the Book Stall, helping to put up the tents and marquees in the morning, or helping to look after the stalls or sell raffle tickets in the afternoon. We also need prizes for the tombola.

  • If you are able to spare any time, please contact us and let us know.

It doesn't matter if you can only spare an hour ...all help will be gratefully appreciated!

Have a look in the Events Gallery to find out what happened at previous Family FunDays.

15 February 2019
FGVW Secures National Lottery Support to Save Our Medieval Lake

The Friends of Gledhow Valley Woods in North Leeds has received funding of £50,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund for its "Heritage On Your Doorstep" project, it was announced today. Thanks to National Lottery players the project will restore the medieval Gledhow Lake in Gledhow Valley Woods, removing silt, improving biodiversity and encouraging community use of the area by working with local schools and community groups to develop an exciting programme of community activities and events focussed on creating greater awareness of the wildlife and history of the area and promoting the health benefits of green space.

The work will get underway in Spring 2019 and be completed by April 2021.

The project aims to carry out essential conservation work to secure the long-term future of the lake that is likely to disappear due to the build-up of silt and lack of regular maintenance if no remedial action is taken. The experience of visitors will be improved by providing interpretation boards explaining the history and wildlife of the area, paths upgraded and marginal planting carried out to create a richer range of environments for wildlife. Invasive plant species will also be removed.

The project will provide a range of volunteering opportunities to people from surrounding local communities.

The project will benefit from generous additional funding from project partners Wade's Charity and Leeds City Council's Parks and Countryside Directorate.

The lake and surrounding woodland are a much-loved focal point for the local community. The lake dates from at least medieval times when it most likely functioned as a monastic fish pond. From the late 1760s the lake, complete with cascades and bankside paths, became a central feature of the Gledhow Hall estate, inspired by the fashions that became popular as a result of European travel by the English upper classes.

Gledhow Hall was the home of prominent Leeds industrialists and Leeds' first Lord Mayor, James Kitson MP, Baron Airedale of locomotive industry fame.

During the First World War Gledhow Hall and estate became a military hospital and the lake offered opportunities for punting and ice skating for injured soldiers, which aided their recovery.

The estate was purchased by Wade's Charity in 1928 to be used as greenspace by the people of Leeds.


David Renwick, Head of the National Lottery Heritage Fund Yorkshire and the Humber, said: "Looking after nature and helping people to understand its importance has never been more urgent and will be a major focus for the National Lottery Heritage Fund moving forward. Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players the Friends of Gledhow Valley Woods will help to protect our important wildlife, improve nature and reconnect people to the special places on their doorstep."

Commenting on the award, Martin Calvert, Chairperson of The Friends said: "We're delighted that we've received this support thanks to National Lottery players. The lake is an important place for wildlife and the local community - Yet many people in Leeds don't know of its existence. It's great to know that we are a step closer to securing its long-term future."

Tim Barber from Wade's Charity said: "The Friends of Gledhow Valley Woods have worked incredibly hard to bring everyone together to plan this project and Wade's Charity are delighted that they have been successful in securing funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund."

Cllr Rafique. Executive Member for Environment and Active Lifestyles said: "The work that the Friends have put into this project is exceptional and I am delighted that the City Council is able to support the project through both technical support and practical help from ranger led events to clearance of trees and shrubs on site to improve biodiversity".

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