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HERITAGE WOODS NEWS

Scroll through this page or click on the links below for recent news about the progress of the Fuelling a Revolution programme, including events already held. This page is updated regularly so don't forget to come back soon!


TREES OF STEEL THEATRE PROJECT FOR LOCAL SCHOOLS

Script now available


Children from more than 30 schools across the South Yorkshire Forest have recently been learning about their local environment, as the 'Trees of Steel' theatre project toured the area as part of the Heritage Lottery Funded 'Fuelling a Revolution' programme.

'Trees of Steel' uses drama, music and song, to teach pupils aged between 7 and 11, about the history and value of the South Yorkshire Forest¹s 35 Heritage Woodlands. The show, which features a talking tree, woodpeckers and multicoloured squirrels, provides an entertaining and informative experience for its young audience. In particular it highlights the way in which charcoal produced from the trees growing in the woodlands played a vital role in the development of South Yorkshire¹s world famous iron and steel industry.

For those schools and groups that are interested in putting on thier own performance of Trees of Steel the script of the producion can be obtained from the Education Officer, Peter Machan. Please ring 0114 2571199 or e-mail peter.machan@syforest.co.uk

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FUELLING A REVOLUTION WEBSITE IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
The Fuelling a Revolution website has been recognised nationally as a valuable educational resource by the National Grid for Learning and the Virtual Teachers Centre. In order to meet the criteria for the accreditation, the site had to pass a battery of technical and content checks as well as being reviewed by panels of teachers in those National Curriculum subjects covered by the site.

One of the reasons the site has been so popular is due to the quality and detailed information found there about South Yorkshire Forest's woodlands. Users of the site have downloaded over ten thousand pages from the website, mostly from the UK, but the site has also received visits from more than 20 other countries around the world, including Japan and Singapore, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Tanzania!

For more information on the website, contact South Yorkshire Forest Partnership on 0114 257 1199 or e-mail team@syforest.co.uk


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SHEFFIELD WOODLAND DETECTIVES
This summer saw the launch of a 'Big Book' designed both to provide children with an understanding of Sheffield's rich woodland heritage and to help teachers in fulfilling the requirements of the National Literacy Strategy.

Written by local experts Joan and Mel Jones, and with illustrations by Bob Warburton, Sheffield Woodland Detectives gives a fascinating insight the history of ancient woodlands, why they are still here, what they were used for and what wildlife you might see in them today. It does this through the story of a visit to Woolley Wood by a local man and his grandchildren. On the way the children discover an abundance of information about the history of the wood and find that they too live near the Heritage Woodlands of Wheata Wood, Roe Woods, Bowden Housteads Wood and the Gleadless Valley.

Big Books are an important tool in the delivery of the Literacy Hour in primary schools. As their name suggests, they are A2 or A3 sized books, the text of which is large enough to be read by a whole class at a time and which, as a result, can be used as a basis for a week's literacy work.

The book, which was launched in Woolley Wood in May, has been well received by children and teachers. To obtain a copy, contact Jon Dallow or Glyn Hooper of Sheffield's Heritage Woodland Team on 0114 2736199.

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ARCHAEOLOGICAL DISCOVERIES IN SHEFFIELD'S HERITAGE WOODLANDS
Surveys carried out as part of the Fuelling a Revolution programme in Sheffield by the Northern Archaeological Associates and the South Yorkshire Archaeology Service have identified over 350 sites of interest where only 22 were previously known! A wide range of features has been recorded, including medieval boundaries around Rollestone Wood and internal divisions within coppice compartments at Tinsley Park and Woolley Wood. Many of the features relate specifically to woodland industries, such as charcoal-making platforms and the whitecoal pits used to make the fuel for lead smelting. There is also plenty of evidence of coal and ironstone extraction throughout many of the woods as well as sandstone quarrying at Bowden Housteads Wood.

The survey has helped to enforce the concept of the woods as 'working woodlands' that supported the local economy and industrial growth of Sheffield and will be used in interpretation materials produced for the woodlands. Knowledge of the woodlands' history helps the Heritage Woodlands team to plan its future management.

For more information contact the Sheffield Heritage Woodlands team on 0114 273 6199

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INNOVATIVE PROJECT PUTS ENVIRONMENTAL INFORMATION ON THE WEB
The South Yorkshire Forest Partnership has been given the green light to establish an innovative and interactive one-stop-shop website for environmental information that will help online learning, with the award of 125,000 from the New Opportunities Fund, a lottery 'good cause' distributor.

When it is launched, greensites.co.uk will provide all the people of the region with fast, unrestricted and easy access to information about natural heritage, environmental learning and countryside recreation, in a fun and easily accessible format, making it relevant to their daily living. greensites.co.uk will give people of all ages an opportunity to increase their knowledge and understanding of environmental issues and of South Yorkshire's countryside at their convenience, at their own pace and in a place easily accessible to them.

The South Yorkshire Forest Partnership is one of 150 UK national and local organisations each benefiting from a 50 million programme creating a 'communities bank' of Internet learning resources announced by the New Opportunities Fund.

Richard Walker, Director of the South Yorkshire Forest Partnership said, "This award shows the New Opportunities Fund's confidence in the South Yorkshire Forest Partnership and will open up a gold-mine of environmental information. Many millions of people will not just have access to knowledge at their fingertips but the one-stop-shop web portal will contribute to lifelong learning by enabling people to develop valuable IT skills and by providing information that will give people the confidence to visit sites, learning about their local countryside through direct experience. It will also contribute to community development by encouraging people to share experiences through the website."

Topics covered by greensites.co.uk will include, Where to go, who's who, get involved, wildlife, a teacher's centre and environmental & outdoor events. The website will be launched later in 2002.

For more information about the South Yorkshire Forest or about greensites.co.uk, please contact David Heath on 0114 257-1199 (david.heath@syforest.co.uk).

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