Go Wild in the Stour Valley 2022

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The Dedham Vale and Stour Valley on the Suffolk Essex border is a beautiful place to explore and discover the natural world and wonders of our past.


There are so many incredible places to visit and activities that you can do when you get there. So why not Go Wild in the Stour Valley!

Check out our Family Activity leaflet for more information or the Stour Valley Education Network (SVEN) discovery Factsheets, which are full of interesting facts, places to go and activities to do.

Calendar of 2022 Events

Some outdoor learning providers from the Stour Valley Education Network (SVEN) have created self-guided family trails at their sites which you can visit and do for free. You can also take part in a selection off fun nature based events for families and young people!

15. Dragon Watch – Wednesday 15 June, 11am – 2pm

Join British Dragonfly Organisation Recorder for Essex, Neil Phillips in this Dragon spotting session.

Meet: Daws Hall Nature Reserve, Henny Rd, Bures CO8 5EX

Cost: £10/adult, £5/under 15s

Book: www.dawshallnature.co.uk/events


16. Suffolk Wildlife Trust Young Wardens – Sunday, 26th June 10am – 2pm

Practical conservation and wildlife activities for unaccompanied 10 – 15 year olds.

Meet: Arger Fen & Spouse’s Vale CO8 5BN

Cost: £7

Book: www.suffolkwildlifetrust.org


17. National Meadows Day – Saturday, 2nd July 10:30am – 3:30pm

Visit this beautiful floodplain meadow site to celebrate meadows. Activities will include a mini BioBlitz, nature trail, and art & craft activities for all ages as well as the chance to experience the camera obscura brought by Gainsborough House.

Meet: Foxearth Meadows Nature Reserve, Foxearth, Sudbury CO10 7GA

Cost: Free

Book: No booking required. For information, please email mark.prina@arocha.org.

18. Flatford BioBlitz – Saturday 18th June, 10am – 3pm

Join nature experts looking for wildlife in Flatford and have fun with some of the family nature activities.

Meet: Flatford Field studies Centre, Flatford Rd, East Bergholt, Colchester CO7 6UL

Cost: Free

Book: No booking needed.


19. ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ – Pantaloons Outdoor Theatre Company – Friday 22nd July, 7pm

A summer comedy of masks, music and mistaken identities – suitable for all the family.

Meet: The Bailey, Clare Castle Country Park, Malting Lane, Clare, Sudbury CO10 8NW

Cost: £14 /adult, £8.50 /child

Book: www.tickettailor.com/events/thepantaloons


20. Wonderful Wildflowers – Friday 22 July, 11am – 2pm

Spend an idyllic summer’s day at our picturesque Nature Reserve with a beginner friendly session identifying Wildflowers.

Meet: Daws Hall Nature Reserve, Henny Rd, Bures CO8 5EX

Cost: £10 /adult, £5/under 15s

Book: www.dawshallnature.co.uk/events


21. Dragonflies and Damselflies Guided Walk – Saturday, 23rd July 10:30am – 12pm or 1:30pm – 3pm

Dragonflies and damselflies are a highlight of Foxearth Meadows. A 90-minute stroll with David Chandler, author of ‘Dragonfly’ and ‘A Beginner’s Guide to Dragonflies & Damselflies of Britain and Ireland’ will provide plenty of time for stopping, looking and learning.

Meet: Foxearth Meadows Nature Reserve, Foxearth, Sudbury CO10 7GA

Cost: Free. Donations to Arocha UK welcome.

Book: Email to mark.prina@arocha.org


22. A Big Wild Summer Family Adventure – Saturday 23rd July, 11am – 1pm

Come and enjoy a morning adventure with us. Activities include making a butterfly feeder, leaf printing onto fabric to make a flag, creating a clay creature in the mud kitchen, wildlife trail, bug hunt in our meadow plus fire-lighting and toasting marshmallows over a campfire to make a delicious smore.

Meet: RSPB Flatford Wildlife Garden, Flatford Rd, East Bergholt, Colchester CO7 6UL

Ages: 3-11 years. Each booking must include an adult at the event

Cost: Adult Free. £10 /RSPB child member, £11/ non-member

Book: bit.ly/FlatfordEvents2022


23. Suffolk Wildlife Trust Young Wardens – Sunday 24th July, 10am – 2pm

Practical conservation and wildlife activities for unaccompanied 10 – 15 year olds

Meet: Arger Fen & Spouse’s Vale CO8 5BN

Cost: £7

Book: www.suffolkwildlifetrust.org


24. Freshwater Fact Finding – Saturday 6 August, 11am – 2pm

Peek beneath the rippled mirror surface and discover the world beneath the water.

Meet: Daws Hall Nature Reserve, Henny Rd, Bures CO8 5EX

Cost: £10/adult, £5 /under 15s

Book: www.dawshallnature.co.uk/events


25. River Stour Trust Coracle Regatta – Saturday 6 August, 12pm-5pm

Free event organised by coracle owners with support from the River Stour Trust to offer everyone an opportunity to try to handle one of these unusual craft.

Meet: Bures Recreation Ground

Cost: Free

Book: www.riverstourtrust.org

26. A Big Wild Summer Family Adventure – Tuesday 9th August, 11am – 1pm

Come and enjoy a morning adventure with us. Activities include making a butterfly feeder, leaf printing onto fabric to make a flag, creating a clay creature in the mud kitchen, wildlife trail, bug hunt in our meadow plus fire-lighting and toasting marshmallows over a campfire to make a delicious smore.

Meet: RSPB Flatford Wildlife Garden, Flatford Rd, East Bergholt, Colchester CO7 6UL

Ages: 3-11 years. Each booking must include an adult at the event

Cost: Adult Free. £10/RSPB child member, £11/ non-member

Book: bit.ly/FlatfordEvents2022


27. Big Wild Sleep Out – Saturday 13th August, from 3:30pm to 11am Sunday 14th August

Join us for an evening under the stars. Pitch up your tent in our meadow and enjoy nature crafts, a hooting owl trail owl pellet dissection and spotting nocturnal wildlife on an evening walk with the help of a bat detector. We will supply a barbeque for you to cook food on and as night falls, the campfire will be lit and marshmallows toasted. In the morning we will provide a continental breakfast, and the chance for you to see what moths have been found in out trap. An expert will be on hand to help with identification.

Meet: RSPB Flatford Wildlife Garden, Flatford Rd, East Bergholt, Colchester CO7 6UL

Cost: £24/RSPB adult member, £26/ adult non-member. £13/RSPB child member, £15/child non-member

Book: bit.ly/FlatfordEvents2022


28. What’s that Bat? – 19th August 2022, 7:30pm – 9pm

Get hands on with bat detectors in this evening of who’s who of the bat world.

Meet: Daws Hall Nature Reserve, Henny Rd, Bures CO8 5EX

Cost: £10 /adult, £5/under 15s

Book: www.dawshallnature.co.uk/events


29. River Stour Trust Pirates on the Stour – Bank Holiday Monday 29 August, 11am-4pm

Free boat trips for young pirates with a fare paying adult.

Meet: Sudbury

Cost: £6 per adult, free for children

Book: www.riverstourtrust.org


30. Flatford Nature Day – Tuesday 30th August, 11am – 4pm

Nature-based activities & crafts. Buy a Nature Passport at the NT car park reception & collect stamps.

Meet: National Trust Flatford, CO7 6UL

NB: Car park is £5 for non-National Trust members

Cost: £3/child

Book: No booking needed


31. River Stour Trust Bat Cruise – dates in August/September

A voyage of discovery, silently cruising down the beautiful River Stour in our electric powered boat/s to watch the bats as they emerge into the twilight and swoop low over the water.

Meet: Sudbury

Cost: £16 per adult, £10 per child

Book: www.riverstourtrust.org


32. River Stour Trust Sudbury to the Sea (S2C) – Saturday 10 & Sunday 11 September

Weekend event welcoming paddlers in canoes, kayaks, SUPs and other small unpowered craft to navigate the 37km of the River Stour, from Sudbury to Cattawade. Limited to 300 craft!

Meet: Sudbury

Cost:

Book: www.riverstourtrust.org


33. Evening Bat Walk and Moth Trapping – Tuesday 27th September, 5:30pm

Bat walk and moth trapping held in memory of Sarah White, local bat expert. Start the session around the fire bowl for bat chat before setting moth traps and going on a bat walk with bat detectors.

Meet: Foxearth Meadows Nature Reserve, Foxearth, Sudbury CO10 7GA

Cost: Free but donations are invited and will be divided equally between A Rocha UK and Essex Bat Group.

Book: Email mark.prina@arocha.org


34. Medieval Trail – 21st – 30th October

The ruins of Clare Castle make the perfect setting for a fun family trail, spotting medieval symbols hidden in the Park.

Meet: Visitor Centre, Clare Castle Country Park, Malting Lane, Clare, Sudbury CO10 8NW

Cost: £1

Book: No booking needed.


35. Familiar Fungi for First Timers – Saturday 22 October, 12pm – 2pm

An introduction to common fungi, how to identify them and where to find them.

Meet: Daws Hall Nature Reserve, Henny Rd, Bures CO8 5EX

Cost: £10 /adult, £5 under 15s

Book: www.dawshallnature.co.uk/events


36. Flatford Nature Day – Tuesday 25th October, 11am– 4pm

Nature-based activities & crafts. Buy a Nature Passport at the NT car park reception & collect stamps.

Meet: National Trust Flatford, CO7 6UL

NB: Car park is £5 for non-National Trust members

Cost: £3/child

Book: No booking needed

37. River Stour Trust Santa Boat Rides

Santa is leaving his sleigh at home! Join Santa and his crew of elves aboard the John Constable Lighter for a festive family river cruise and a visit to Mrs Claus’s tea room.

Meet: Sudbury

Cost: £12 per person

Book: www.riverstourtrust.org