GNS Field Meetings and Indoor Meetings at Cirencester

The field meetings, unless stated below, will last about two hours and will be of general interest, including birds, botany, geology… whatever turns up. Stout footwear essential, and remember your hand-lens and binoculars. Post codes are sometimes provided to help satnav users get roughly to the right location, but please bear in mind that for rural locations these will only be approximate and you will still need to find the exact location from the grid reference.

The series of indoor winter talks takes place on the second Friday in the month from October through to April at Watermoor Church Hall, Cirencester, GL7 1JR. The hall is open from 7pm for 7.30pm start. Free to members. See below for directions.

Sunday 26 March.                 10.00 – 12.30. Coombe Hill Reserve. A recording meeting for early migrants and general interest. Meet at the reserve car park. Follow the narrow lane alongside and SW of the Swan Inn at Coombe Hill traffic lights, CP at bottom. SO886272. Leader: Andrew Bleutt, 01452 610085 / 07584 689090.

Sunday 9 April.                     10 – 13.00. Darkham Wood, Redmarley. A new venue for GNS in a privately owned wood. This is a recording meeting and a chance to find out what is present. Meet at the entrance to the wood SO740301 and drive through to hard standing area. Leader Rick Benson-Bunch and Des Marshall – 01242 245143. Please dress appropriately for the weather, good boots or wellingtons will be necessary.

Thursday 20 April.               11 00 – onwards. Selsey Common and other locations.  Meet at the Selsey Common car park with multiple entrances on the B4066 at SO82880267/GL5 5PL for a ‘pot luck’ botanical survey of spring flowering plants.  Cerastium semidecandrum Little Mouse-ear occurs on the Selsey common and C. pumilum Dwarf or Curtis’s Mouse-ear was recorded there 20 years ago.  We will move on to search other commons and roadside verges for ephemerals including the apparently rare segregates of Erophila verna, Whitlowgrass.  Bring lunch.  Leader: Clive Lovatt email preferred clivemlovatt@gmail.com or 01173 823 577 / 07 851 433 920.

Thursday 11 May.                 14.00 – 16.00. Normans Wood, Newent.  A return visit to this privately owned ancient woodland. Afternoon recording meeting for bird song and general interest. Short walks on potentially muddy paths. Meet at the entrance to Normans Wood  SO727239. Leaders: Mervyn Greening – 01531 820166 and Will Bick.

Saturday 13 May.                  09.00 – 12.00. Cotswold Water Park. A summer visit to the western edge of the Water Park. Spring migrants and general interest. Meet at Lower Moor Farm, (Wiltshire Wildlife Trust). SU008938. Leader: Ken Cservenka, 01285 656480.

Thursday 18 May                  11 00 – onwards. St Briavels and Slade Bottom, Forest of Dean. A ‘pot luck’ botanical survey focussing on plants not recorded since before 2000 (list available) in two tetrads.  We should be able to visit St Briavels Castle and see the tufa formation at Slade Brook SSSI.  Meet at Forestry Commission Car Park at Tiddenham Chase ST558993/GL15 6PT to consolidate before moving on.  Bring lunch.  Leader: Clive Lovatt email preferred clivemlovatt@gmail.com or 01173 823 577 / 07 851 433 920.

Sunday 4 June.                      09.00 – 12.00 h.Walmore Common. A return visit in summer. Birds and general interest. Recording meeting. Meet in the lay-by at Walmore Hill School, SO747145. Leader: Andy Jayne, 07919 278806

Thursday 8 June.                  11.00. Slip Wood  Wye Valley, to look for Stellaria nemorum, Wood Stitchwort, at its old sites in the Wye Valley. Park at the Slip Wood car park, SO543 055. Carry lunch and  wear suitable clothing.  Leaders Clare and Mark Kitchen. 01453 810958.

Saturday 10 June                  11.00 – 14.00. Rough Bank. Butterfly Conservation’s recently acquired reserve. Unimproved limestone grassland. Butterflies, moths and limestone plants including orchids. Meet in the reserve car park, SO914087. Leader: Ken Cservenka, 01285 656480.

Thursday 15 June.                18.30 – onwards. May Hill, Newent.  An evening meeting for a general interest ramble on the hill, with a possible follow-up at the Yew Tree Inn. Meet at the National Trust car park SO692223. Leader: Mervyn Greening 01531 820166.

Sunday 18 June.        11.00. Selsley Common, Grass Workshop/Field meeting  Part 1 to look at roadside and calcareous grassland species. Bring lunch, wear suitable footwear. Equipment advised includes Field Guide, magnifying glass, labels and bags for specimens. Park on the edge of the common, SO828 026.   Leaders Clare and Mark Kitchen. 01453 810958.

Thursday 22 June.                11 00 – onwards. Rodmarton, Culkerton and the Fosse Way, NE of Tetbury. A ‘pot luck’ botanical survey of largely unrecorded monads close to the county boundary in a rural setting.  Rosa tomentosa, Downy Rose should be seen.  Meet at Rodmarton Church ST942981/GL7 6PE (limited parking).  Bring lunch.  Leader: Clive Lovatt email preferred clivemlovatt@gmail.com or 01173 823 577 / 07 851 433 920.

Saturday 24 June                  21.15 for a 21.30 start. Crabtree Hill, Forest of Dean. Nightjars. Please email Andrew Bluett; gnsmembership@btinternet.com with a preferred date. The evening meetings will be weather dependent. The best chances of seeing Nightjars are on reasonably clear and still evenings. If necessary, the dates will revised. Full instructions will be sent out ahead of the proposed dates to all who wish to attend.

Friday 30 June.                     Forest of Dean. Nightjars. (see Saturday 24 June).

Sunday 2 July.           11.00.  Poor’s Allotment and the Park, Forest of Dean. Grass Workshop/Field meeting  Part 2 to look at acid grassland species. Bring lunch, wear suitable footwear.  Equipment advised includes Field Guide, magnifying glass, labels and bags for specimens. Park at the Tidenham Chase car park, ST558 993.  Leaders Clare and Mark Kitchen, 01453 810958.

Saturday 8 July.                    11.00 – 13.00. Woorgreens Lake, Forest of Dean. Odenata and general interest. A chance to use Ingrid’s recent book on Gloucestershire’s Damsels and Dragonflies. Meet in the car park east of Speech House on B4226, SO623124. Leader Ingrid Twissell, 01452 714413.

Saturday 8 July.                    Forest of Dean. Nightjars. (see Saturday 24 June).

Saturday 5 August.               11.00. Foxes Bridge, Forest of Dean, to record Foxes Bridge Bog Nature Reserve and newly cleared area nearbyBring lunch, wellington boots advised. Meet and park at the car park 1mile east of Speech House on the south side of B4226, SO632 123. Leaders Clare and Mark Kitchen, 01453 810958.

Tuesday 17 August.              11.00. Cleeve Hill, to look for arable weeds in the fields at the side of the common, possibly moving on to other sites. Meet in the Quarry car park at SO989 271. Please do not park in the golf club car park but go over the cattle grid and around to the left. Bring lunch, wear suitable footwear.   Leader Clive Lovatt,  email preferred, clivemlovatt@gmail.com or 01173 823 577 / 07 851 433 920.

Tuesday 12 September.                    11.00. Upper Lode Lock, River Severn, Tewkesbury. To look for riparian species including Limosella aquatica, Mudwort and several Persicaria, Knotgrass species. Meet at SO881 329. Bring lunch and wellington boots advised.  Leaders Clare and Mark Kitchen, 01453 810958.


GNS Annual General Meeting

The Society’s 2017 Annual General Meeting will be held on 7th April 2017, followed by a talk from David Simcox – the fascinating history of the Large Blue Butterfly in the Cotswolds and the story of its re-introduction. It will be held at Watermoor Church Hall, see directions below.

Directions to Watermoor Church Hall, Cirencester

Map showing Holy Trinity Church, to which Watermoor Church Hall is attached
Route to Watermoor Church Hall, Cirencester from Bristol or Gloucester
Route to Watermoor Church Hall, Cirencester from Tetbury or Stroud

Other Meetings

Members may like to know of the following field meetings.

Amphibians and Reptiles

Events and surveys across the county. Contact David Dewsbury for details. Phone 01594 832068, mobile 07786 543961, email david.dewsbury@btinternet.com

Dean Fungus Group

The Dean Fungus Group runs forays throughout the year. Contact Keith or Valerie Davies for information on 01452 760278 or email email keith.val@hotmail.com

GNS Lichen Group

The Lichen Group meets once a month during the warmer months. New people, including beginners, always welcome. Lichen meetings begin at 11am and generally go on until about 4pm, though you are encouraged to stay for just as long as you wish. All you need is a x10 hand lens, and a picnic if you intend staying after lunch. To join the mailing list, email Juliet Bailey, glos.lichens@gmail.com

Gloucestershire Invertebrate Group

The GIG has field meetings mainly at weekends from April to October. GNS members are welcome to come along and see what they do. Contact David Long (01242 527673) for further advice. Look out for Invertebrate meetings during National Insect Week, 20-26 June 2016.

Gloucestershire Botanical Group

Contact Mark and Clare Kitchen for information. Phone 01453 810958, mobile on the day 07783 448203, email clareandmarkplants@yahoo.co.uk

All meetings are for botanical recording and will not have had a visit beforehand so the excitement of what we find is for all participants. We will identify as many plants as possible so suitable for learners and more experienced botanists. As well as the plants we are searching for we will record all we see.

Gloucestershire Bryophyte Group

The Gloucestershire Bryophyte Group meets monthly from October to April; see the British Bryological Society website for details.