We believe volunteering for us brings lots of benefits to those who take part but you don't have to take our word for it - here's a selection of comments from some of our regular volunteers.

"Apart from enjoying the fresh air and physical exercise involved in coppicing, pulling up birch or ragwort, installing gates or fences, logging, pathway clearing or the myriad other tasks we were set, I always enjoyed the happy repartee amongst volunteers.  It was as good as Morecombe & Wise or The Two Ronnies." 

Bob Bennett

"Having moved to Leighton Buzzard from Salisbury in 2002 I did not know anybody, then I found the Greensand Trust and I have been out on Wednesdays for over 13 years. I've enjoyed our working days. One skill that I've learnt is cutting down trees, in the winter months, with anything up to 7 inch diameter. Safely may I add! Bonfires are another of my specialities, knowing how to stack and when not to load any more on a raging fire. I have made many new friends with The Greensand Trust and have had some fun times along the way, in all weathers too, from raking and sweltering in the sun, to lunch in the snow." 

Chris Woodhall

"I have only been volunteering for the trust for a short time but I love it. The joy of watching herons nesting and seeing a fluffy hatchling for the first time is huge reward for the time I spend there."  

Fritha Fletcher

"Last summer I remember a woodland walk at Rushmere with a group of 6 year olds from a local school. On our way back to the car park and their coach, after a busy day bug hunting and exploring, the children were tired, grubby and mostly happy. One little boy said 'do you know, my mum said I could have the day off school today to go swimming with my little brother, but I'm glad I did this...it's been my best day ever!' "

Helen Worth

"Being a volunteer meant I was on site the day that two mating herons were in the process of  building a new nest.  It wasn't the sunniest of days so not many visitors came, and I probably wouldn't have done myself if I wasn't volunteering.  This meant I had the telescope to myself and could watch just what a difficult job it is for two herons to build a nest.  Absolutely fascinating and absorbing.  An event I will remember!

"When I started as a Heron Watch volunteer I had no idea how to set up and focus a telescope, now, just four months' later, I'm a wizard at this, although not quite so good when it's raining and I have to set up indoors! Doing a two hour stint watching the Herons is just wonderful.  It's great to share what's going on at the Heronry with our visitors and very satisfying to hear 'Wow!'  when people first see the Herons through the telescope. I enjoy talking with all of our visitors, young and old, and just sharing the beauty that Rushmere offers. I've learnt so much from the other volunteers I have worked with.  I consider myself to be still just a Heron enthusiast, but am fairly rapidly acquiring some of their expertise knowledge."

Joan Cooper

"Since early retirement, I've been volunteering with The Trust for 12 years and volunteering in The Greensand environment is for me an enjoyable core activity which I look forward to every week, regardless of the weather. It is pleasurable for me to give something back in improving our local and unique rural landscape. The tasks are varied and it is rewarding to see the impact that we have made to Rushmere in a short space of time. Volunteering helps keep me both physically and mentally fit and there is a bonus of socially interacting with other like-minded people." 

Keith Whitehead

"Through volunteering with The Greensand Trust I've found a new interest and met such a lot of lovely people. There's so much you can get involved with if you want to. It's a great way of learning about conservation and particularly local issues."

Liz Hooper

"I love it when we return to a site a year later to see the difference our work has made on the landscape. Parts of Rushmere have been transformed by the volunteers into some beautiful patches of heathland and woodland. It makes all the hard work feel worthwhile."

Mike Bird