Join us today

Could you give £5 a month to help protect once plentiful wildflower meadows or woodland butterflies under threat? Our work to protect our local wildlife has never been more important.

Join us

Honouring the 'Founding Fathers' of College Lake

Monday 23rd September 2013

Rodney Sims, Avril Davies, Graham Atkins, Ken Thompson. Pic Rob LewisRodney Sims, Avril Davies, Graham Atkins, Ken Thompson. Pic Rob Lewis

George Goddard and Graham Atkins, two of the 'founding fathers' of BBOWT's College Lake nature reserve were honoured at a rededication and book signing event on Saturday 21 September.

George and Graham were among the team who transformed Pitstone's former College Lake chalk quarry and cement works into the vibrant wildlife sanctuary that it is today.

Thanks to support from Buckinghamshire County Councillor  Avril Davies, the event also doubled as a launch for Graham's book, Creating a Nature Reserve: the story of College Lake, which tells the story of the transformation from an active chalk quarry to a beautiful nature reserve.

Avril, in whose division College Lake is situated, donated £1,000 from her Community Leader's Fund to enable the publication and sale of the book. "The creation of the nature reserve is a big part of our local history, and a tremendous contribution to conservation and our environment. The story of College Lake had to be told in Graham's own words, and it will become an important archival work," she said.

With a small team of volunteers, Graham, a former Castle Cement employee and Cheddington resident, and George Goddard, former general manager of Castle Cement, worked over 25 years to create the right habitats and conditions for a haven for wildlife at College Lake.

During Saturday's event, the Castle Hide was rededicated to George for his support and encouragement.

Tom Beeston, College Lake Visitor Centre Manager, who hosted the event, said: "College Lake is an amazing example of how the county council, local business and the community can work together to make an exceptional conservation project happen."