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Join the Big Pull and help the natural habitat

This news article was published more than a year ago. Some of the information may no longer be accurate.

Published: 29/05/2013

This conservation project is co-ordinated by South Gloucestershire Council and the Avon Invasive Weeds Forum to tackle the spread of Himalayan Balsam across South Gloucestershire and beyond. Balsam is a non-native plant which is found along our rivers and streams and its seeds can quickly spread, smothering other native flowers and vegetation as it goes.

Pulling up the plant by hand is easy and the best way to stop the spread, which is why a series of Big Pull conservation work days are being organised as part of the South Gloucestershire Wild4life project. We are focusing on the Frome Valley Walkway to Goose Green in Yate to help prevent balsam spreading further upstream. These work days will take place from 10am to 1pm on Saturday 1 June, Saturday 15 June, Saturday 29 June and Saturday 13 July.

This Saturday’s workshop will offer an opportunity to try your hand at pulling up balsam. Rowena Kenny, the council’s Wild4life project officer, said: “Come along to one of our Big Pull events on the Frome Valley Walkway and do your bit for local conservation. Himalayan Balsam causes major problems in the countryside by dominating our native plants and causing flooding so it is really important we keep it in check and stop it from spreading.”

There will also be a litter pick and a geocaching session running as part of the Big Pull event on 1 June. Geocaching is an international game where people use GPS receivers to find hidden boxes. It’s a popular hobby that will get the whole family out into the fresh air, walking and exploring places of interest and beauty.

In addition, there is a free geocaching and litter picking event taking place on Sunday 2 June at the Tumps, Patchway from 10am to 1pm.

All ages are welcome to attend and there’s no need to book. Gloves, free refreshments and snacks will be provided. Please wear strong outdoor footwear and weatherproof clothing. Long trousers and sleeves are advised along with sun cream and a hat if the weather is hot. Meet at the far end of Celestine Road, Yate NS37 5HB to join in.

For further information or to discuss access needs contact Rowena Kenny by emailing

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