All posts by Glyn Jones

Fantastic Spring Clean effort

Many thanks to all of the litter pickers who came up to Blaen Bran on Sunday and helped to fill 32 bags of rubbish and assorted nonsense. A special thanks to Henllys Beavers who (we think) picked up the most. Special mention for Thom Board of Keep Wales Tidy for providing top class support once again. Great to see some new faces  – hopefully see you at our next pick up (maybe in 4/6 weeks?)

Also a shout out for Sue’s soup -at least I think that’s what it was!!

Without such support Blaen Bran wouldn’t be the same place.


Event cancelled – Sunday 4th March

Unfortunately the following event is cancelled due to snow warnings.

Why not join us for a woodland spring clean up, followed by a cuppa and welsh cake (maybe some soup too)

Meeting at the log circle where bags and litter picks will be available.

This even t is coordinated with Keep Wales Tidy and Torfaen CBC’s Spring Clean-Up Campaign.


Sunday 2nd April – tree planting day

Volunteers have planted over a thousand trees already this winter, and now we have another thousand to plant!!!

So why not join us on Sunday 2nd April, setting off from the log circle at 10am, we’ll make our way up to the planting area in the top, clear felled, section.

Anyone arriving later than 10am can make their own way up to the top (take the main track up to the pond, turn right towards the Mountain Air end, and after approx 150 metres take the left track into the felled area – look out for the Blaen Bran flag!!
We’ll remind everyone nearer to the day

Spring Clean litter pick at Blaen Bran

Another date for your diaries!
We are supporting Keep Wales Tidy and Torfaen CBC in their campaign to have a Spring Clean-up across the borough.
At Blaen Bran on our next Volunteering Sunday – March 5th we are looking for volunteers to litter pick the woodland, and also our car park and The Square. We’ll have a bunch of “grabbers” (litter pickers) available from Steve. Meeting at the log circle at 10am, we’ll spread out from there, meeting back up for a cuppa.

Tree planting day

replanting 2015

A tree planting day is being arranged for Sunday 26th February, up at Blaen Bran.
Meeting at the log circle, to set off at 10.00am, we will make our way up to the planting area which is the northern end of the felled area up at the top of the woodland.
We have a 1000 bare root saplings to put in, including hazel, sweet chestnut, oak, alder and poplar. Many of the trees have been provided by our friends at Cwmbran Community Council, as part of a flood prevention initiative.
It would be great to see as many volunteers as possible up there on the day. Hopefully we will have support from local scouts and other groups too.
Boots or wellies would be advised.
Anyone arriving later than 10am can make their own way up to the top (It’s the Mountain Air end of the felled area)
We’ll remind everyone nearer to the day

Social evening with Friends of the Earth

Together with Friends of the Earth, we are holding a quiz and games evening at the Bush Inn, Upper Cwmbran, on Tuesday 29th November at 7.30pm.
This is always a great night, with quizzes, games, dingbats, anagrams and more.
Tickets (£5 inc chips and a roll) are available from the Bush, or call 01633 875704
Come and join in a great night – and support some good causes too.

Greenwood Spoon Carving course – 9th July

On Saturday 9th July we are holding a spoon carving course up at the log circle area in Blaen Bran, starting at 10am and finishing at 2pm.

There is a maximum  of 10 places available, and initially, places on the course are on offer to members of BBCW only, but if any vacancies remain, closer to the event, these will be made available to non-members.

There is a charge of £10 per person, which is really cheap for such a course, and you get to take your own spoon home with you!

There is a minimum age for attendees of 13 years. Also, anyone under 16  must be accompanied by an adult.

Steve, our volunteer co-ordinator, who is an experienced spoon carver himself, will deliver the training and provide all of the materials and tools required. You will use a straight bladed knife and also a curved hook knife. You’ll learn a range of cuts with these knives which will enable you to use such carving tools efficiently and safely.

Join us for a creative craft training course set in our fantastic community woodland.

Advisable to bring a pack lunch but teas and coffees will be provided

Please be aware that very sharp knives will be used during this training course!!

Anyone interested in joining us to learn a new skill, please apply by email to –  “”

Next Volunteer day – Sunday 17th April at 10.00am

A reminder that we are looking for volunteers (new and old) to join us this Sunday morning. Meeting at the log circle at 10.00am.

The plan for Sunday is to use the chipper machine to munch some of the piles of brash from the felled area. The wood chip will then be used for paths in Parsons Wood, our forest school area. Also, we may well be making a start on cutting back the bramble (we’ll provide secateurs) and there may be some trees to plant.

Hopefully we’ll have a good crowd there this week. Please wear appropriate footwear (boots or wellies), sensible clothing and keep an eye on the weather forecast. Children will have to be accompanied by an appropriate adult.

Super fun at our Easter Egg Hunt

Despite stormy weather over the Easter week-end, we were able to enjoy a dry bank holiday afternoon of camp fires, toasted marshmallows, bread making on sticks, woodland quiz, bonnet making and craft work too. Plenty of chocolate prizes ensured that no youngster went home without at least one egg (some managed two or three – no names!!)

The new roundhouse was a big success but we need to improve our smokeless fire technique!!

A big thank you to Darren Alexander who kindly sponsored the eggs this year.  Darren, you made a lot of kids very messy!

Thanks also to all those who turned up to help out on the day.