Thursday, 25 September 2014

New Secretary of State appointed members wanted for Broads Authority

The Secretary of State is currently appointing two National members for the Broads Authority.

National members have a primary responsibility to ensure that the Authority further its statutory purposes.

A National member should also make sure the Authority fulfils its objectives and does so in a way that best suits the special characteristics of the Broads.

Members are expected to achieve the efficient, effective and accountable governance of the Authority in the best interests of the Broads.

Members provide leadership, scrutiny and direction for the organisation as a whole.

For more information visit http://publicappointments.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/applications/5423f419e4b07e661e64f40e

The deadline for applications is 23 October 2014 at 12 noon.

Monday, 15 September 2014

A chance to get involved in plans for the Waveney Valley

People living in, working in and visiting the Waveney Valley have the opportunity to find out what is going on in the area and get involved in future plans.

The Broads Authority is holding an informal, interactive parish forum on Thursday 25 September at Beccles Public Hall in Smallgate to share information about its work and hear local people’s ideas and views.

The public are invited to drop in between 5pm and 8.30pm to meet Broads Authority Members and staff, including the local rangers.

There will be information and displays on everything from landscape and cultural history, tourism and recreation, wildlife and habitats, to planning matters, local access, navigation, volunteering opportunities and climate change adaptation.

Suffolk Police will be promoting their new Boatshield crime prevention initiative for boat owners and River Waveney Trust and the Waveney Valley Community Archaeology Group will be represented.

There will be a brief presentation at 7.30 pm with a chance to ask questions.

Ideas will be particularly welcome on improving land and waterside access and on local information for an exciting new Broads landscape interpretation project.

The Authority holds four parish forums a year, one in each of its ranger areas.

For more information visit www.broads-authority.gov.uk or telephone 01603 756070.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Broads volunteer nominations needed

A call has gone out for people to nominate volunteers in the Broads for a prestigious National Parks award.

The 2014 UK National Parks Volunteers Awards are a way of saying thank you to invaluable volunteers who look after these precious landscapes as well as encouraging further engagement.

And anyone who does volunteer work in the Broads, part of the National Parks family, can be nominated. They do not have to volunteer for the Broads Authority and National Parks UK is keen to get a range of nominations.

Beth Williams, Broads Authority Volunteer Co-ordinator, said: “Volunteers play such an important role in keeping the unique landscape of the Broads special so we would like to see as many nominations from the area as possible.”

The volunteers being recognised can range from school children to those who have offered decades of service, from the individual who helps mend fences to the organisation helping to reintroduce a native species.

National Parks UK Director Kathryn Cook said: "The scale of volunteerism within the 15-member National Parks family is immense. And it really is inspiring to think of all the ways in which they contribute. It's hard to imagine what our National Parks would be without volunteers."

The awards recognise those deemed to have gone above and beyond the expectations of volunteers in helping to protect, maintain and enhance the environment and heritage of their area.

They will be given in four categories:

•    Individual (over 25 years old)
•    Young person (under 25 years old)
•    Group
•    Volunteer project

Recipients of the group and project awards will receive a £1,000 bursary to help facilitate future volunteering activity. The winning individual and young person will each receive his or her choice of footwear from outdoor specialist and UK National Parks brand partner Merrell.

To nominate a deserving individual, young person, group, or project visit: www.nationalparks.gov.uk/aboutus/jobs/2014-volunteer-awards

Nominations will be accepted until 22 September 2014, with shortlisting taking place in early October.

Nominations are encouraged for any active volunteers working within the boundaries of one of the 15 members of the National Parks family. Winners will be announced in November.

To learn more about volunteering within the UK's National Parks, visit: www.nationalparks.gov.uk/aboutus/jobs/volunteering

Monday, 1 September 2014

Broads staff carry out boat census

Chief Executive John Packman joined other Broads Authority staff and volunteers to carry out the four-yearly boat census.

The census, held in the week preceding the August bank holiday, involves noting down boats travelling at strategic places around the Broads and marking their direction and boat type.
The results are used to ascertain trends in boat numbers and usage patterns.

Over three nine-hour days, boat numbers at 14 key sites were recorded. With locations differing from lonely riverbanks, like Oulton Dyke, to the much friendlier Horning Ferry Inn, Authority staff and volunteers sat poised with their check lists ready to mark off all manner of vessels as their glided past.

Mark King, Waterways and Recreation Officer, said: “Now the census is over, the real work begins with the collating of the data recorded. Once the numbers have been checked, crunched and verified the results will be used to ascertain numbers of registered vessels compared with hire craft, along with types of vessel currently in use and an overview of who is using the Broads.”

Broads Authority Chief Executive Dr John Packman carrying out the boat census at Great Yarmouth

The information is also used in conjunction with a variety of Broads responsibilities but mainly ranger patrols and the Sediment Management Plan.

The rangers will use the information to ensure that areas of high usage are patrolled regularly. And with regards to the Sediment Management Plan, the census will give officers an insight into the types of vessels being used within the Broads. They can then tailor the dredging programme accordingly if, for example, deep-bottomed craft are seen to be frequenting certain stretches of the river.

Mark added: “A huge thank you to all involved in this very important task.”