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Volunteering in Lincoln - open spaces

Become a volunteer

If you are interested in volunteering your time to one of our much loved green spaces please download one of our application forms and contact us to arrange an informal chat. 

Sites you may wish to become involved with include:

  • The Arboretum
  • Birchwood Nature Park
  • Hartsholme Country Park
  • Lincoln’s Common land
  • Swanholme Lakes 

Volunteering sessions are flexible but follow the management requirements for each site as set within our management plans.  There are a number of different tasks which can be undertaken by volunteers.

Conservation volunteering

Below is a brief summary of the types of conservation and practical tasks groups may be involved in.

Throughout the year

General tasks such as litter collection and repairs/construction of footpaths and fences.

Summer months

Cutting back and clearing away vegetation with hand tools to keep our access routes clear. Clearing invasive weeds such as ragwort and rosebay willowherb. This would involve hand pulling and bagging the weeds in our meadow habitats, a great area for learning more about the butterflies, damsel and dragonflies we have on site.

Autumn months

Raking grass meadows and clearing any litter from areas recently cut. We are always on the look out for fungi at this time of year. Also during autumn we may carry out ditch clearance, keeping the channels free of fallen logs, trees and general debris.

Winter months

At this time of year we carry out scrub clearance, clearing areas of invasive scrub from our heathland habitats, such as Swanholme Lakes Local Nature Reserve. This would involve volunteers using hand saws and loppers to remove the scrub and small trees. We might then build brash hedges with the cut material, providing further habitat for birds and invertebrates and create new fencing to protect this fragile area. Over winter the reserve is an important site for wildfowl so there should be plenty to see.

Wildlife monitoring 

Wildlife monitoring is encouraged upon all green spaces, this ensures that priority habitat is conserved whilst overall biodiversity value is improved.

Since the development of online recording apps many wildlife organisations have developed systems which can be used to record a wide range of species; this information can be gathered whilst exploring our sites and is a powerful way of measuring the health of our habitats.

For instance the wetland birds of Hartsholme Country Park and Swanholme Lakes SSSI are recorded by a volunteer as part of the national Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS). Surveys are carried out monthly. 

The island on Hartsholme Lake is an important site for herons. Over the breeding season the heron population is monitored and this information also feeds into a national survey run by the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO).

Events and activities

We run many family events in our green spaces and are often looking for volunteers to help support these events. This may be outside delivering an activity or by helping greet visitors at our Visitor Centre within Hartsholme Country Park.

Other skills

You may have other skills which can help enhance these important spaces. For instance volunteers have helped us with information displays and by maintaining websites. If you think you can make a difference please get in touch and tell us more about yourself and your ideas.

Joining us 

If you would like to know more about any of our opportunities please download and fill out an application form.

For more information contact 01522 873458 or email hartsholmecp@lincoln.gov.uk.

If you can't find what you're looking for visit our contact us page for a number of options which may help.