The Mendip Hills AONB Young Ranger Scheme has been running since 2005 when the first two year programme was set up with 15 Young Rangers aged 11- 15 years, selected from local schools. Fairlands in Cheddar, Chew Valley School, The Blue School in Wells, Churchill Community School and Oakfield School, nr Frome.
The Europarc Federation – the umbrella organisation of Europe’s protected landscapes, set up the model for such schemes and it is this model that the Mendip Hills AONB has followed.
The scheme aims to promote better understanding of why this area is so important and to give experience and understanding of countryside management. It also provides life skills such as first aid, communication and navigation that whilst relevant to the countryside are skills that are beneficial to young people in whatever career path they choose. It is intended that through this scheme, young people who live in or close to the AONB gain a better understanding and sense of belonging to it.
In 2008 the Mendip Hills AONB Young Rangers received the Somerset Council Staff award for collaboration.
The Young Ranger Programme
The current draft programme provides 8 one day activities (one more to be decided) held on Saturdays with a celebratory camp at the end of the programme. The programme includes e.g. communication, first aid, navigation, landscape appreciation, farm diversification, geology and archaeology.
Young Ranger Programme 2012-2013 (2) (PDF Download 40KB)
You will find updates in our Young Rangers section of news.
Europarc Junior Ranger camps
Europarc promote and assist in organising an annual camp for Young Rangers to attend from all over Europe. Our Young rangers have attended the camp in the Cairngorms 2008 and Spain 2009. The 2010 camp was hosted by the Mendip Hills AONB in partnership with Goblin Combe Environment Centre and Fernhill Farm. 2 Young Rangers took part in the 2011 camp in Weerribben-Wieden National Park in July.
21st July 2012
International Junior Ranger Camp This year the International Camp took place in the Triglav National Park, where Junior Rangers are already celebrating their 10th birthday, as they have been one of the pioneer of the EUROPARC JR programme, which was launched in 2002!
Mendip Hills Young Rangers Review
The AONB Unit recently commissioned a review of its Young Ranger scheme to identify new funding sources and partners to develop the scheme. The Review of the Mendip Hills AONB Young Ranger scheme (August 2010) by Chris Gledhill Future Directions Consultancy stated that the AONB team ‘had developed a first class young ranger scheme’. Young Ranger Scheme Report 200810 (PDF download – 580KB)
Becoming a Young Ranger
Every two years the AONB Unit takes on new Young Rangers to the scheme. We have recruited the 2011-2013 Young Rangers.
On completion of the two year programme Young Rangers have the option to stay on as Advanced Young Rangers.