FoBCA Member Newsletter – May 2018
• The AGM of the Friends of BCA was held on Sat 26 May 2018. Attendees heartily greeted each other, taking their coffee and rusks in the wonderfully warm winter sunshine prior to the meeting.
Rob Slater from WESSA gave an excellent talk on the Green Coast initiative, what it entails and what will be required from responsible parties in order to retain this status. The Blaauwberg beach within the BBNR is the first pilot site in South Africa. Big Bay beach, Bloubergstrand lost its Blue Flag status a while ago, and it is imperative that we succeed with this initiative.
Rob has given us a copy of his slide presentation, to share with members on request. Keep a look out on the FoBCA website where it will be made available for your perusal.
The area included in the 1st Phase of the Green Coast initiative is shown below. As we gain experience with the initiative, we intend to include additional areas adjoining the Blaauwberg beach and coast line.
The business part of the meeting started with the Chairman’s Report and election of committee members. The FoBCA treasurer's report revealed an excellent financial year, building its funds through various events, and a substantial increase in membership numbers. A proposal to increase membership fees was accepted and to come into effect from 1 April 2019. With immediate effect, members can now opt to pay membership fees for either 5 or 10 years in advance at the current rates. This means members can avoid having to renew membership each year and, as an added bonus, save on future fee increases. (See updated Membership Form for new long term fees.)
For a peek at what your membership fees have covered in the last few months: salt licks for the eland and hartebeest antelope on the BBNR; printing of the new FoBCA information brochure (which was introduced to all at the AGM); bus transportation of under-privileged children to an environmental education session; website maintenance; gun powder for cannon firing; and the list goes on – thank you Friends for your continued support!
• A wonderful time was had by those who joined the 5 May Two Hills Walk. All of them were inspired to become new members of the Friends of BCA. Take a look at the photos from the day on our Facebook page.
• The Tortoise Talk was held on Sat 21 April at the Rietvlei cabin, and was extremely well attended. Some very fascinating facts were shared. Did you know for instance that if a tortoise releases that smelly liquid on being picked up, they become dehydrated? Once picked up, people often take them to a spot unfamiliar to the tortoise, and if there is no water nearby and it is a sunny day, the tortoise can then die of dehydration! So please always place a bowl of water close to the tortoise if it has been moved. For those interested in knowing more and who were not able to attend, click here. The presentation will also be made available on the FoBCA website.
• Battle of Blaauwberg 1806 Interpretive Centre on Blaauwberg Hill
Remember the generator room close to the top of Blaauwberg Hill on the left? Those who have done the walks to Blaauwberg Hill will know this last slightly steep section of the route. The FoBCA was given a donation of R100 000 with which to renovate and refurbish the room for display, information and meeting purposes with chairs, a video projector and a generator. These improvements are nearing completion, and the Battle of Blaauwberg 1806 Interpretive Centre will soon be available for use. You will all be invited to an official opening - keep an eye on your emails for details.
• Sat 7 Jul 9am (and first Saturday of every month) - CREW Botanical Walk starting at Eerste Steen - contact Petra Broddle on 079 776 3701
• Tue 5 Jun - World Environmental Day
• Fri 8 Jun - World Oceans Day
• Sat 29 Sep - Battle Up Blaauwberg Trail Run - new starting point to be at Table Bay Mall!