Two more full time volunteer rangers reporting for duty! Alex joined the Tintagel – Holywell ranger team back in January this year, while Michael had his first day with the team on the 16 February. We’ll let them introduce themselves…
Alex on the left, Michael on the right. Our new(ish) FTVs getting stuck into some coast path maintenance at Porthcothan.
My name is Alex Gilroy and I am one of the latest FTV additions to the Tintagel to Holywell ranger team. Originally from Dorset, I’ve been on a mission to gain and expand my experience of practical conservation and land management to open up a career within the sector. The natural environment has always been a huge passion of mine and much of my free time is spent in it or on it, whether it be surfing, fishing, climbing or hiking. My quest has so far led me to many amazing interesting places from the dusty Australian Outback to deserted Hebridean beaches. I studied my degree at Plymouth University and since graduating in 2013 I have worked for the RSPB at Land’s End and then for a builder, helping to renovate an old coastguard cottage in Sennen Cove. As a very keen surfer I got to know the Cornish coast inside out whilst hunting for waves in between lectures and assignments whilst at Uni and I am stoked to be part of the team and to help preserve, learn about and protect this magical patch of the world.
My first few weeks here have absolutely zoomed past and I have already been able to get involved with fencing, scrub clearance, hedgelaying and swailing. The highlight for me so far has been the swailing at Dannonchapel and seeing flames as big as houses and the hillside ablaze (in a totally controlled and safe fashion!). I am looking forward to getting to know the team, getting trained up on the brushcutters and getting involved with species surveys.
See you out and about!
Michael ‘Milky’ Bell
I’m originally from a small village in the Midlands called Yoxall where I lived with my parents, two brothers and three dogs. Having grown up in the middle of the countryside I appreciated the beauty of the outdoors and the necessity to manage these habitats for the benefits of wildlife and people, which led me to studying Level 3 Countryside Management Extended Diploma at Stafford College.
I joined the team to develop my conservation knowledge and practical skills and hopefully gain some certificated qualifications to enhance my chances of full time employment within the countryside. I finished college in July 2014 where I learnt how to manage different sites and habitats for different species to increase biodiversity and for the public’s enjoyment of various sites.
Up until now I have been doing odd jobs both in and out of conservation until settling into this volunteer position.
I enjoy snowboarding and hiking and can’t wait to explore more of Cornwall’s stunning scenery in my spare time, and have a shot at surfing which I’ve never done before!