Hello there my name is Indy, I am 14 years old. For the past year since the RSPB took over management and the new centre opened, I’ve been volunteering with the RSPB in the magical Sherwood Forest and beautiful Budby South Forest.

When I first started at Sherwood I was part of the Welcome Team in the Visitor centre. It felt like I was starting at a new school as I was quite nervous. I didn’t need to be as it was a lot of fun.

After a few months on the Welcome Team I felt that my calling was Guided Walks, taking visitors on a tour through the forest. Pointing out any wildlife we see on the way, be it birds, bugs, bees, mammals. Some of the highlights have been Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Redstart, Nightjar, Glow Worms and Cuckoos, but most importantly what makes Sherwood so incredibly special, the trees.

Sherwood Forest is famously known as a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) for the 997 amazing Ancient Oak Trees that live in it (ancient being over 400 years old). 997 is the biggest collection of Ancient Oak Trees in Western Europe which is absolutely awesome. Considering that oaks support over 700 different species its vital that we do our upmost to protect them. Not only are they hugely important for wildlife, they are also magnificent to look at.

Being able to share my love for wildlife and having the chance to learn more about it through the RSPB has and always will be purely brilliant and I am so grateful to be able to do what I do in the mighty Sherwood Forest.

That’s the moderately easy part of my volunteering. The hard work starts on Budby. On Budby I am part of a committed and very fun group of likeminded volunteers taking part in practical tasks set by our lovely leader Chloe. Scrub clearing, fencing repairs, putting up signs, taking part in surveys, you name it we’ve done it! All in the name of conservation.

No matter what the weather we are out there! Whether that makes us committed or crazy, I’ll let you decide! Either way it’s always amazing, just like the biscuits Chloe supplies.