Surrey Bird Club offers free membership to young birders
The Surrey Bird Club (SBC) has announced that it's offering free membership to young birders. SBC is thought to be only the second club in the UK to offer such a scheme, which is available to all under-18s in Surrey and adjacent counties who have a keen interest in birds.
Like many clubs in the UK, SBC currently has relatively few younger members. Thanks to a generous legacy from former President Derek Washington, who was especially keen to encourage young birders, the club is now removing any cost barrier to a greater involvement in local birding for an age group that generally has little money to spend.
Steve Chastell, County Recorder, said: "We hope this initiative will enable existing young birders to participate more actively in Surrey birding and also attract those with a general natural history interest, showing them how enjoyable and worthwhile birding can be."
As well as publishing the annual county bird report and a quarterly magazine for members, the SBC has close links with the BTO, offering great opportunities to learn valuable skills by participating locally in various surveys or ringing. Furthermore, the club provides access to a network of experienced, enthusiastic and helpful birders in the county, many of whom lead various field meetings throughout the year.
The Surrey county boundary extends up to the River Thames, incorporating famous reserves in the capital such as London Wetland Centre and Beddington Farmlands, both of which feature as field meeting destinations regularly. Surrey’s renowned heathlands, including Chobham, Crooksbury and Thursley Commons, are also visited on club outings with an annual European Nightjar walk particularly popular.