The Derbyshire Bat Conservation Group is a registered charity (registration number 1139339) working in partnership with the Bat Conservation Trust and in close contact with the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. We are a voluntary organisation and in 2014 celebrated the group’s 30th birthday!

As set out in our constitution, the group aims to advance the protection and conservation of bats, their roosts, feeding areas, hibernacula and surrounding environment in Derbyshire and to educate the public and the group’s members in all matters related to bats.

Members of the group give advice on bat related issues and those who have a Natural England licence can examine roosts and any bats which are present. Membership extends across the whole county and visits can be arranged as required.

The group also records and maps the distribution of bats and operates a number of bat box schemes. Our records database represents a unique resource for bats in Derbyshire and we provide data to conservation bodies and ecological consultants on a regular basis.

Members of the group are happy to visit clubs and societies to give talks about bats and to lead walks. Please contact us for more information and/or to arrange an event.

OUR BATS

Get Involved

We undertake a whole range of activities to help conserve the bats of Derbyshire. These include:

  • Training our members in a range of survey techniques

  • Monitoring bat box schemes

  • Carrying out field surveys using acoustic survey methods

  • Undertaking winter hibernation surveys of caves and other underground structures

  • Education through walks and talks to promote awareness of bats and their ecology

  • Caring for injured bats

  • Maintaining a database of biological records

 

Becoming a member entitles you to attend any of the events we organise including the above activities, all members receive access to our members-only area of our website with additional training materials and general information about bats and all members receive event notifications. Our members come from all walks of life and we encourage you to join us and come along to an event!

Our timeline

Take a look at some of the key milestones reached in our 34 year history!

derbyshire bat group logo alt white

1984 - Group is Founded

On Thursday 15th March 1984, the inaugural meeting of the Derbyshire Bat Group was held at the White Hart in Duffield. The minutes from that meeting state that it was felt very important that the Group should collect bat records for the whole county and that training was seen as an important element.

First Hibernation Survey

1984 - First Hibernation Survey

In December 1984 members of the Group surveyed the cellars of Elvaston Castle searching for hibernating bats. Roy Branson, a founding member comments that no bats were found. Hibernation surveys would not be something that the Group undertook regularly until the early 2000's.

Split Logos2

1994 - Separation from the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust

In the early years the Group had been affiliated to the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust (DWT) but in 1994 we became an entirely separate body which allowed us to grow and develop as we wished. We still work closely with our friends at DWT and regularly run training events for them at their offices in Middleton for their members.

Nathusius pipistrelle Steven Roe

2004 - Nathusius' pipistrelle recorded for the first time

A new species of bat for the county, Nathusius' pipistrelle is recorded for the first time in Long Eaton. The bat (picture here) was injured by a cat and was nursed back to health by a member of the bat care network before being sucessfully released. Over the next 14 years the number of records will increase from this one to 35 records.

camera crew

2006 - Filmed for BBC Countryfile

As the BBC's Countryfile programme spent a year at Calke Abbey, the Group was filmed checking the bat boxes for the series, the Group's second TV appearance.

Elvaston box check

2010 - We become a Registered Charity!

Twenty-six years after forming, the Group becomes a registered charity through the Charity Commission for England and Wales (number 1139339) as the need to become more accountable and professional grows.

Twitter header with organisers

2017 - We host a UK first

The UK's first Autumn Swarming Conference takes place at the Hayes Conference Centre in Swanwick, Derbyshire. The Group co-organises the three-day event with the Vincent Wildlife Trust and the Bat Conservation Trust with speakers from Canada, Europe and the UK attending. Fieldwork takes place on the Saturday evening with all 100 delegates participating in the evening survey.

Trustees

Bill Cove

Bill Cove

Chairman

Bill became the Group’s chair in 2015 and as well as steering the group, Bill helps lead the national Nathusius' pipistrelle project we are involved with. He also looks after the Group's general enquiries email account which takes your correspondence from our website.

Steve Roe

Steve Roe

Vice-Chair

Steve first joined the bat group when he was 12 and manages our Twitter account, updates our website & is the Partnership Group contact acting as a go-between the Bat Conservation Trust and ourselves.

Suzie Hill

Suzie Hill

Secretary & Membership Secretary

Suzie is both our general secretary & membership secretary and takes the minutes at each of our meetings and organises our agendas. She is currently getting to grips with a new time-expansion bat detector so is often out and about!

Andrew Shervill

Andrew Shervill

Treasurer

Andy manages our financial accounts and is also the contact between ourselves and the Charity Commission and sends them our required document updates at the end of the year.

Helen Towle

Helen Towle

Events Secretary

When you receive event reminders via email, this is who they come from! Helen organises when each of our events takes place and liases with the various event leaders to ensure that there is a variety of upcoming events.

Alan Roe

Alan Roe

Joint County Recorder.

Alan maintains and inputs new records into our database which is then used by Shirley to search for records. Alan is currently working to help us understand what is in our database by producing GIS maps.

Shirley Cross

Shirley Cross

Joint County Recorder.

Shirley joined the committee in 2015 and searches our database when we receive requests for bat data from ecological consultancies which provides a large source of our income, helping us enable to continue to conserve Derbyshire’s bats.

Marian Mackinnon

Marian Mackinnon

Newsletter Editor

Marian is our newsletter editor who pulls together articles from various members for our bi-annual newsletter. If you have any articles, however short, please get in touch with Marian who would love to hear from you!

Steph Cooling

Steph Cooling

Bat Care Officer

Steph co-ordinates the bat care undertaken within the county to ensure that injured or grounded bats found by the General Public are collected by bat carers within the group as quickly as possible to help them make a full recovery.

Alan Wragg

Alan Wragg

Officer

Alan stepped down as chair after 10 years in 2015 and is concentrating on making sure our bat box schemes and National Bat Monitoring Programme surveys continue to run.

Phil Marrs

Phil Marrs

Officer

Phil joined the committee in 2016 and places his vote on any committee business required.

Jess Eades

Jess Eades

Officer

Jess re-joined the committee in 2017 and places her vote on any committee business required. She also organises winter identification courses for the caving community.

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