Extension of the Green Social Prescribing programme

Healthier with Nature’, the Green Social Prescribing (GSP) programme in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire has received official confirmation from the Treasury of its extension. The focus of Phase II of the programme will be on mainstreaming nature-based interventions by developing shared investment models, and developing a stronger outcome dataset including value for money.

Data from Phase I showed that the projects were reaching the people who could benefit most – communities who experience inequalities in health and nature connection. We are delighted that support will continue for the many projects who are helping people to connect with nature, contributing to the recovery of our natural world and transforming people’s lives.

In addition, there are plans in North Somerset to develop a youth specific GSP network, while in BANES, a new social prescribing (SP) manager is in post based with 3SG and tasked with developing a SP strategy. Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust are the first NHS trust (as far as we know) to develop an in-house training course based on nature connection, encouraging practitioners from a range of services to bring nature into their practice and develop stronger links with voluntary, community and social enterprise sector providers.

We are in the final stages of creating a WENP Nature and Health website, in the meantime, the Healthier with Nature Directory can be found here.


Avon Needs Trees secures land for South West’s largest new woodland in a generation as part of the Forest of Avon

Bristol-based tree-planting charity, Avon Needs Trees, has purchased 422 acres of land between Bristol and Bath at Wick Farm, Compton Dando, with funding from Forest of Avon Trust, Triodos Bank and over 1,000 people and businesses who gave to their crowdfunding campaign.

The site will be home to Lower Chew Forest, with a plan to establish a forest of 100,000 trees, which when put together with adjoining woodland, will be bigger than the Downs (Clifton and Durdham) and Leigh Woods in Bristol, and twelve times the size of Royal Victoria Park in Bath.

In February 2024, the charity launched an ambitious crowdfunding campaign to raise £100,000 in just six weeks to help buy the land that will become Lower Chew Forest. The campaign was hugely successful, raising over £171,000 with the support of over 1000+ individuals, organisations, and businesses.
Grant funding for the project has also been provided by the Forest of Avon Trust via the Trees for Climate land acquisition fund backed by Defra’s Nature for Climate Fund, and Triodos Bank has provided a loan.

Whilst their Crowdfunder has now closed, Avon Needs Trees are still seeking longer term individual and business partnerships to help them purchase the trees and establish the new woodland habitats. You can find out more on their website at: https://avonneedstrees.org.uk

Avon Needs Trees also have three vacancies to join their team – find out more here: Careers – Avon Needs Trees

Wider Partner Updates

The “Chew Valley NatureFest” will be taking place at Chew Valley School on Sunday 30th June (10:30am – 3pm).
Free admission and all ages welcome, the event has a programme of stalls, nature-based activities and talks including a Q&A panel session in the afternoon.
Special guest Mike Dilger will be leading a bug hunt in the morning session, with a guided river walk led by the Bristol Avon Rivers Trust (BART).

Do you know a school with an orchard? 

As part of their Orchard for Pollinators programme, funded by the West of England Combined Authority, the Forest of Avon Trust is offering an amazing opportunity for schools to improve and manage their orchards…FOR FREE!
Our tree team will come to the school and mulch, water, tie and improve the orchard for healthy trees and fruit to grow!
If you are a school and looking for free orchard care support please get in touch with the team: [email protected]

The NFU had great success at the North Somerset Agricultural Show which took place at the North Somerset Showground on the 6th May 2024.

They also have a current vacancy for a Farming (County) Advisor – Gloucestershire (South Region). More details can be found on their website, and the deadline is 27th May 2024: Farming Adviser – Gloucestershire (South Region) | NFU Careers

The 2024 Bee Bold Awards will be held on 6 June 2024 at the University of Bath Business Management School (3.00pm-6pm).

The awards will be part of an afternoon of nature exploration that will include panel session on the interdependence between businesses and nature and a biodiversity marketplace to connect businesses with ways to help support pollinators and nature recovery within the region.

The event is free to attend, with tickets available here: Become a Force for Nature: Bee Bold Awards 2024

©2024 West of England Nature Partnership E: [email protected] T: 0117 980 0392 A: 32 Jacobs Wells Road, Bristol, BS8 1DR

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