Introducing our new Mend the Gap Programme Manager, Ruth Staples-Rolfe
We’re pleased to welcome a new Programme Manager who will take the Mend the Gap project forwards, Ruth Staples-Rolfe.
Mend the Gap aims to deliver projects and schemes to reduce and compensate for the visual harm done to the Chilterns and North Wessex Downs AONBs by the electrification of the Great Western main line. Ruth talks about how she’d like to involve local communities in the process, and bring her experience of landscape management, teaching, and public engagement with nature to the project.
I am pleased to take up this exciting position. One thing I have enjoyed throughout my career is meeting new people and seeing things grow. The Mend the Gap Programme came about because of the electrification of the railway. The scars of this change still need to be healed through planting and enhancement projects. The question I have been exploring is how we do this as a community. To do this, I have been drawing on my experience of landscape management.
I began my career as a teacher and I loved watching the children develop their interests, confidence and understanding. A good teacher watches and listens as much as they talk, and this is something I still do, as I progress through my career. From teaching I went to public engagement in the Wildlife Trusts with events, visitor centre management and education programmes. I hope we can utilise these skills in this programme and raise awareness of the special qualities of this beautiful stretch of the Thames and the Chalk Ridgeway.
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