Understanding the Landscape
The Thames Landscape Strategy delivers an exciting education and outreach programme to increase access and understanding of the Thames environment to as wide an audience as possible. The programme is wide-reaching and is designed to mix formal learning with volunteering, events, project work and the enhancement of recreational opportunities.
People need to know what is going on along the river and to feel that they have a voice in influencing its future. This understanding has helped to inform communities on why certain (sometimes controversial) measures are needed and have helped to change practices proposed by the Strategy and its partners based on this local knowledge.
The annual immersion in the Thames of Lord Ganesh – the TLS organises several events along the Thames in partnership with London’s Hindu community.
The TLS Outreach Programme
The involvement of local schools and other education programmes have been weaved into most TLS projects. The schools programme has carried out both formal and informal learning with an emphasis on linking learning with the opportunity to get out into the landscape through volunteering and outdoor activities. The outreach programme informs a diverse range of communities about the work undertaken, what makes the Thames landscape special and how it needs to be protected, enhanced and maintained.
Achievement and Success: Education and Outreach
- Partnership with the Surrey Care Trust, who run environmental work programmes on board the community narrowboat Swingbridge with young offenders and alternative education programmes with young people out of mainstream education.
The formal education and outreach programme was originally rolled out by the London’s Arcadia project through the appointment of a Heritage Education Officer in partnership with Orleans House Gallery. Since the completion of the Arcadia Project in 2009 the TLS has continued its partnership with the Gallery carrying out projects with local schools across the TLS area.
The TLS funded jollyboat Greycourt
The Education and Outreach Programme is designed to connect people with their environment. It provides opportunities for more people from all backgrounds to have greater access to, and better understanding of the river’s management, conservation, and dynamics.
The Programme is designed to link with all TLS on-the-ground project goals, and includes the wider agendas of volunteering, interpretation, healthy living, and life long learning.