It's two years ago today that over 150 people gathered in Stapleton Baptist Church to launch Snuff Mills Action Group. From our very first meeting we said we wanted to help the Council improve the valley for wildlife and people and make sure Grove Wood was properly protected.
In the two years since we started we have raised nearly £50,000 to improve Snuff Mills and we have been busy getting our hands dirty by renovating the old garden and organising regular litter picks. We've also organised events to encourage more people to enjoy the valley including bat walks and owl prowls. Our People's Millions award will improve the valley for visitors and ensure that every child in Begbrook School gets to experience what Snuff Mills has to offer this year. And there'll be a photo competition and fun dog show this year too. It's probably no coincidence that Bristol City Council describe Snuff Mills and Oldbury Court as the city's Cinderella park and they seem ever more determined to do more to improve the area.
The Group has done everything it possibly can to protect Grove Wood, the woodland on the other side if the river from Snuff Mills park. When we started the Council would not listen to us. They even agreed to the felling of trees in Grove Wood next to Blackberry Hill, despite nearly 120 people objecting. But thanks to the hundreds of people who have written to the Council, turned up at protests and made it absolutely clear that they love Grove Wood, it now has a woodland Tree Preservation Order protecting every tree and the Council have removed the landowner's rights to undertake certain types of development in the wood. We have been campaigning for the upper path to be designated a Public Right of Way and have applied for Grove Wood to become a Town Green - common land for all to enjoy. We believe that Grove Wood should be in safe public ownership and we will continue to campaign for this until it finally happens.
I'd really like to thank everyone who has helped make Snuff Mills Action Group to force for good in the community that it has undoubtedly become, especially those people who have given so much time and energy. Thank you and Happy birthday to us!