At the recent South Yare Wildlife Group’s 2019 AGM, the guest speaker, Simon Hooton from the Broads Authority, took those attending on a virtual journey across the Broads landscape, past, present and future.

Simon’s storytelling and stimulating questioning really brought out from the participants what they valued in the Broads and what they felt when confronted with potential changes. Be it rising temperatures, higher water levels, or more intense weather events, Simon reminded us that all Broads residents and visitors, human or moth shaped, will feel these impacts in similar ways.

Other business covered in the group’s annual summary included a number of updates from the past year.

Many Wild Patches along the River Chet have been incorporated into the wider B-Lines initiative, aiming to create ‘biodiversity stepping stones’ particularly for pollinating insects. This has included input from Poringland Parish Council, Bergh Apton Conservation Trust and Chedgrave Church.

In terms of group membership and finances, the number of fully subscribed members is currently at 83, with over 50 paying automatically by standing order, which is very helpful and appreciated. Furthermore, the financial position is healthy, with expenditure through 2018 being spent on the cost of events, including donations to the organisations our guest speakers represent; insurances; website maintenance and updating; infrastructure at the SYWG Wild Patch at Rockland Allotment; and postage and printing.

These costs are all effectively covered by our involvement in the National Lottery Heritage fund, ‘Water, Mills and Marshes’, the first payment from which the group will receive in early 2019.

It was also discussed how volunteering roles are open for assistance at most events, with poster distribution and other tasks as they arise. Anyone who would like to be included in the email group which gets informed of these opportunities should contact us. There is no minimum commitment, just a willingness if you have the time when the group needs help.

Finally, the Committee is seeking additional members and it will shortly be reviewing roles and responsibilities. There are vacancies for the roles of Secretary and Membership secretary. Again if you are interested please contact us.

Overall 2018/2019 has been a really positive year for the South Yare Wildlife Group and we hope this will continue into 2019/2020.