Wednesday 10 February 2016

Getting ready for a season of BSBI meetings

Meetings & Communications Committee in action,
February 2016. Jon in green jumper, Sarah on his right.
Image: L. Marsh
Off to London last week for a meeting of BSBI's Meetings & Communications Committee. A small team of people (I'm proud to be among their number) meets twice each year to plan our programme of national field and indoor meetings and to make sure that BSBI is communicating clearly and effectively with our members, our wider support base, policy-makers, academia and the media. 

This year's programme of field meetings across Britain & Ireland is already available here and Field Meetings Secretary Jon Shanklin keeps the webpage updated weekly. 

Sharing ID tips in the field -
visit to The Umbra, one of four field trips
on offer at the BSBI Summer Meeting 2015
Image: O. Duffy 
Jon is also leading on organising this year's Summer Meeting, to be held at Blencathra, Cumbria, over the long weekend of 19th-23rd of May. More details here, including a booking form. 

If you haven't been to a Summer Meeting before, you can get a flavour of what's on offer by reading some of the reports filed by me from last year's Summer Meeting in Northern Ireland and by Jon from the 2014 Summer Meeting in Scotland

We have also started to prepare for this year's BSBI Exhibition Meeting, to be held on 26th November at CEH Wallingford where committee member Jodey works, so she'll be leading on organisation with Kylie, Ian and I helping again. And Sarah is already looking at possible locations for next year's Summer Meeting, which will be held in Wales, and for the 2017 Exhibition Meeting in London. Are we organised or what!

Meetings & Communications Committee,
February 2016. From left: Jodey, Kylie &
BSBI Head of Operations Jane Houldsworth
Image: L. Marsh
The committee seemed quite pleased with my report on BSBI communications. It was difficult to report on our Twitter following, which is growing by the day, the many people participating in #wildflowerhour every Sunday evening, the outreach success of the New Year Plant Hunt, the young people we've engaged and the media coverage we generated without sounding horribly smug! 

Committee member and Plant Hunt Co-ordinator Ryan did an amazing job processing the data and he really enjoyed working with BSBI Head of Science Kevin Walker on the analysis, which is almost ready for publication - we are just triple-checking those amazing results and then we'll communicate what we've found - but first you have time to check out those lovely meetings!  

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