ECONET   Conservation Volunteers, Reading, Berkshire
Conservation of the Natural Environment
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Econet is a wildlife conservation group that undertakes a wide range of activities relating to the conservation of the natural environment in public open spaces and other sites in and around Reading. These activities include coppicing, hedgelaying, scrub clearance, control of non native species, footpath clearance and willow harvesting. We are part of The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) Community Group Network and are supported by Reading Borough Council.

In 2002 Econet was formed by the amalgamation of a number of local groups who came together to share resources and reduce costs. These groups were:

Friends of Clayfield Copse
Friends of Mapledurham Playing Fields
Friends of McIlroy Park
Friends of Waterloo Meadows
CROW (Conserve Reading on Wednesdays)

In 2013 the Friends of Cemetery Junction joined the group.

Collectively we have been providing opportunities for local people to participate in the management of Reading's green spaces for more than twenty five years, in the case of CROW since 1986.

With the exception of Cemetery Junction, Econet organises monthly weekend, morning only tasks at each of the 'Friends of' sites for part or all the year together in the case of Waterloo Meadows with occasional evening tasks in the spring and summer. We also organise a variety of full day midweek tasks at various sites in the area throughout the year.

In December we hold a sale of Scots pine Christmas trees, while in April we have our Bean Pole Day event promoting local woodland products and wildlife friendly gardening to which various other local groups are invited. We may also arrange occasional activities such as a Dawn Chorus Walk to mark International Dawn Chorus Day.

Econet maintains links with other local groups in particular Reading Urban Wildlife Group (RUWG)

For Individuals
Whether you would like to work at one of the 'Friends of' sites or join us for our their midweek outings, you will be always be welcome irrespective of whether you are able to come regularly or can only attend the occasional task. There's no membership fee.

No experience is necessary, we'll provide training along with tools and other equipment including gloves as well as tea and coffee for most tasks. Please wear suitable clothing and for the midweek task bring a packed lunch.

We hope you will enjoy yourself while participating in and learning about the conservation of the natural environment.

For information about our current activities and contact details, please see our Programme.

Econet has both Public Liability and Personal Accident Insurance cover for volunteers participating in its tasks. (The sums provided by the Personal Accident Insurance are limited, for details please contact the Treasurer.)

For Organisations
We undertake work for local councils, schools and other organisations.

If your organisation has a task which relates to or aims to encourage an interest in the natural environment, please contact us. Whether it's a once off activity or ongoing either on an occasional or regular basis, we will consider it. Even if we're unable to help, we may be able to suggest others who can.