This year RSPB Scotland Loch Leven is celebrating 50 years of connecting children with nature, volunteering and creating homes for nature. Throughout the year we'll be marking this special anniversary by uncovering stories and memories, working with local groups, creating a limited edition pin badge and hosting a celebration event at the end of October. 

Education room, early 1970s

Share your Loch Leven story with us

Have you been inspired by visiting the reserve in the last 50 years? Do you have a wonderful wildlife story? Do you have photos of work we have done to provide homes for species that are in trouble like lapwings or tales of a school trip? Since we bought the land in 1967, thousands of people have played a part in making the nature reserve what it is today and we’re really excited to uncover more about the social history of the reserve.

If you have a special memory or story which you would like to share you are invited to get in touch (details below). You have got until the end of August to send in your story of 50 words or less, along with a photo if you have one. These stories will then form part of an exhibition which will take place during October leading up to a big celebration day on Sunday 29 October. It’s also a great excuse to dig out gems from our own archive and celebrate our rich history of wildlife education for all ages.

Pedal for parrots fundraiser, 1991

Thousands of children visit each year to take part in our education sessions, do you remember your first visit?

How to share your story

You are welcome to submit a photo or a hand written story (50 words or less) about an experience you had while working, visiting or volunteering at RSPB Scotland Loch Leven (formerly Vane Farm reserve) which you can drop into the visitor centre or post to; RSPB Scotland Loch Leven, Kinross, KY13 9LX. Alternatively email LochLeven50th@rspb.org.uk along with your photo as an attachment. Please do not send in original copies of photos. 

Want to hear more?

Author and poet Anita John is RSPB Scotland Loch Leven’s writer in residence this year and is helping to gather your stories. She will be writing regular blogs and will be keeping an eye on the stories coming in.

Vane farm before it became RSPB Scotland nature reserve. 

Local partnerships

As well as gathering stories to celebrate our anniversary we are teaming up with Kinross and District Art Club (KADAC) who also celebrate their 50th anniversary this year. Throughout June KADAC are displaying paintings in the visitor centre along with a sketchbook of 50 wildlife paintings painted specially for the occasion. On Tuesday 13 June you can come along and paint the reserve with these local artists as part of their "Au plein air" event from 10am - 4pm, drop in any time. 

Kinross high school S4s also did their bit by completing 50 activities on the reserve to help give nature a home on 8 May. For full details see: http://www.rspb.org.uk/community/placestovisit/lochleven/b/vanefarm-blog/archive/2017/05/09/kinross-pupils-take-on-extraordinary-challenge.aspx

Have you seen the golden goose?

To support the work being done on the reserve visitors have the opportunity to buy a special edition golden pink-footed goose pin badge which is only available at RSPB Scotland Loch Leven.

Come and celebrate with us!

Finally you are invited to join us for a celebration day will take place on Sunday 29 October 2017 from 11 am – 3 pm, save the date and check our website for more details nearer the time. 

Geese in October, Alex Gilfillan

I hope you'll enjoy digging out your old photos, we look forward to seeing them!

Alice O'Rourke

Visitor Experience Officer, RSPB Scotland Loch Leven 

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