Skip to content

Contact Us

Copy of Copy of dawn_chorus_logo[1]

Company no. 7500017

Contact Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative Community Interest Company:


Phone: 07758847089. Follow us: on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn



Our volunteers photographed this fine old crabapple tree on one of our guided walks in March. Volunteers pointed out the rows of hairs on the edges of the bud scales that assist winter identification. Unusually this tree was one in a loose row; they usually grow singly in hedgerows. Black birds were seen under the trees eating the fallen fruit and the caterpillar of an eyed hawk moth was spotted in a crevice.


We were delighted to supply copy writing & images to Juno Enterprise Charitable Association for community education resource sheets, this work will benefit over 10,000 people. In addition we printed for the Association community education resources, including foraging bags to benefit several hundred people in 2017. pictured below, Juno Enterprise Charitable Association partnership project with SEND Nottingham.

DJ music

Our volunteers installed a new observation and recovery pen, it will be a great help. It is occupied at the moment by a friendly young wood pigeon who was picked up after a RTA.


We have a forest of basil in our Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative trials garden, for our Grow-How: “helping to grow” project. Volunteers are kept busy watering in the hot weather.

We are arranging a visit by mental health service users and young people with learning difficulties to the office of the Nottinghamshire Crime and Police Commissioner, as part of our community awareness project.

We helped with shelter building and story telling activities for preschool children, brewing up hot chocolate, hammering with wooden mallets, tying ropes, telling stories, practicing communication and teamwork skills and getting lots of fresh air.


This years annual volunteers valentine snowdrop walk took place in the Framland villages, where we watched the kites playing in the wind.IMGP5902

Before Christmas, our community learning group discovered the history, meaning and origin of some sixteenth century carols . Our volunteers  interpreted the project to provide information and tree decorations, following a woodland theme for the community tree festival at All Hallows Gedling. We were delighted to again take part in the festival along with other community groups; information on our work was displayed and a high level of positive community feed back was obtained to feed into our rolling community consultation.


Above: our “post an angel” Christmas project.  Ethiopian angels have been distributed on request: “to spread some light” in the words of  our supporter Shawn. Bunny, donkey and pussy cat angels were popular with the children.

Between 2015 and early 2016 we are helping our partner Juno Enterprise, to celebrate thirty years of delivering outstanding community benefits. We work together on a range of significant projects. Two examples being:

a) species recording: on a visit to the Lincolnshire coast in September, our volunteers recorded Red-footed falcon, Spotted redshank, Whinchat, Marsh harrier, Stonechat and Whimbrel.

b) our “Tremendous Trees project”: on which we have cooperated since 1985.

IMGP4767 11024736_771236582944871_1067688014909395844_n

This year we have a great crop of Lincolnshire snake beans in the Dawn Chorus garden…we will be saving the seed for projects in 2016, the UN year of the pulse. Other bean seeds have been received from members of the community, such as our supporter Mark. Our volunteers have been helping children to check insect hotels, we are comparing designs to find out the preference of species for various designs. (Below: insect hotel on a sycamore tree)


We are appealing for donations of cat food and cash to buy food to feed abandoned cats and kittens in desperate need. We are experiencing a crisis with this project and help is very much needed. Please make cheques payable to Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative: ring 0775 8847089 for posting details. Thank you for your kindness.

IMGP4881 IMGP4883

Volunteering publicity continues to be sent out. A story about the work of our wildlife welfare & rescue volunteers was very well received by the public, highlighting the appreciation for and realization of the importance of this work. Our volunteers do an inspiring job, with great passion, contributing to all aspects of our work. We celebrate the vital work of our volunteers during Volunteers Week and the value & impact that it has on people’s lives and our communities. Glossy ibis, lesser spotted woodpecker & little owl, spotted in same field at same time by Dawn Chorus volunteers on this years volunteers valentine snowdrop walk, well done volunteers of all ages. Pair of dippers, pair of barn owls, pair of ravens and a little egret spotted on one of our guided family walks. Dawn Chorus was delighted to contribute to a Spring study on bluebells by the Radical Honey project, for community creativity, delivered by Jacqueline Woodward-Smith; see link at the right of this page.

Great things happen in the Dawn Chorus organic trials garden, including growing globe artichokes and other heritage vegetables from seed. These are delivered to preschool children’s educational gardens & other community organisations and supporters. Dawn Chorus volunteers are busily feeding underweight, hungry little hedgehogs in the resident hedgehog emergency winter quarters. Dawn Chorus hedgehog hibernation quarters built by our volunteers have all had hedgehogs in residence. The design of the nests has been distributed national. We have campaigned to raise awareness of seasonal risks to hedgehogs, encouraging the public to check before lighting bonfires to prevent sleeping hedgehogs from being burned alive. We advise that people move  and re-site piles before lighting or push broom handles into the base of the wood heap to lift it & shine a torch in and look & listen. We are also asking people to put out water & cat food (not bread & milk as it can kill them) to help them survive. As our communities see the vital importance of our work, we continue to see a steady rise in the number of people supporting us. If you want to support our work, please check below to see our new delivery of very special bespoke Dawn Chorus catalog items by Simply Inspired hand-made clips. Each wildlife & pretty bird themed non-slip clip is individual, just for the little princess in your life. We have extended our range of bespoke Dawn Chorus jewelry,  with three new items becoming available from our popular designer and supporters at Spectral Creations. Dawn Chorus was a very close runner-up in a regional public vote for best community environmental group. We were nominated by Crown Estates. Only a very few votes decided the winning outcome. We enjoyed the activity and gained a huge amount of positive feedback. Laura Norton from Crown Estates said: “Everyone was really impressed with all the fantastic work that you do so a big well done. “ We wish to thank every one who voted for us and all of our supporters, we value every one of you. Below: a colourful inflatable beetle from the recent sustainability event.


We hope that you like this picture of Black Rocks, Derbyshire. It was taken at a Dawn Chorus & Juno Enterprise partnership activity to support access to social, industrial and natural heritage. Our volunteer who took this photo said: “today helped me to understanding that places have special meaning”.


We recently facilitated popular community discussions, around community safety, in relation to statutory and private partnerships, under the Dawn Chorus community & well-being programmes and in partnership with the Juno Enterprise Understanding Democratic Systems programme. Following the great success of Volunteers Week, we have joined up with many friends & look forward to cooperating with them throughout the year. We directly delivered messages to 169,404  individuals during volunteers week, on the vital work that our volunteers carry out, in the current economic climate. Further updates on our work have sent out to every county and city third sector infrastructure organisation in the East Midlands. “Communications” continue to be a theme at Dawn Chorus. We are working with target online communities, on natural and cultural heritage, human and animal well-being, community education and third sector issues. We look forward to reporting positive news from this exciting project. Dawn Chorus campaign information has been networked to 71,197 individuals, through face to face contact at conferences & with individuals & via social networking. Our consultations with stakeholders have received positive feedback from 420 individuals on specific issues & feedback from over 910 individuals on general issues. Dawn Chorus has 2,024 supporters and 659 partners of which 336 are working partners and 323 are in our active co-operative network, some have been with us since 1985.

Showcased: We were delighted that One East Midlands chose Dawn Chorus as the subject for a Case Study and target for promotion. The Case Study can be viewed on the One East Midlands website. Bricks and Bread, the sustainable hub project based in London, has chosen Dawn Chorus as “hub member of the day”  “in recognition of (our) hard work and support”, we feature on the “bread line” website.  Please follow the links to support our partners. Two issues of concern to Dawn Chorus that grabbed the headlines: the positive news that the badger cull was partially postponed in some areas, thanks to the huge campaign on behalf of the badgers (we have been proud to have played a modest part in this achievement) and secondly the terrible news that the bio-security threat to our Ash trees is becoming more evident. This will have grave consequences for the East Midlands where Ash trees are so characteristic, especially in the “Mercian mud-woods” and the Dumble areas. Dawn Chorus is engaged within a number of forums and partnerships that are considering the best action to take to assist in the situation. How now do we “maintain & improve by management, existing mixed ash dominated woodland”? (Notts. BAP) What a difference volunteers can make! For example, Dawn Chorus volunteers have released birds that have recovered from treatment and rehabilitation, including garden birds that have been attacked by cats; our volunteer Andrew said: “it is great to see them flying high above the trees, healthy and free”. So a big thank you to our volunteers for helping to make this year a huge success! Our supporter & volunteer wildlife photographer Ellie sent us the picture below of a cute little fox; Ellie said: “Nothing like a bit of urban wildlife”.


Sales Items

Buy our educational resources or choose a beautiful gift from our catalog.

We provide community educational services, resources and publications, native and heritage plants, antiques and ceramics by arrangement.

Or check out our Dawn Chorus etsy and ebay shops where every item sold supports our vital charitable work to offer educational opportunities to communities, improve wellbeing, create positive changes to the environment and to promote and deliver animal welfare.

We sell bespoke Dawn Chorus craft items including hand-made tools for craft workers, made from sustainable wood in Sherwood Forest; irresistible gifts; baby-shower and bridesmaid tokens and embroidered simples with Nottingham lace detail.

Below: hand made bird and wildlife themed children’s hair grips.



Support Us

What We Do:
“Communities learning, caring for all life and celebrating shared heritage”

Since 1985 we have championed creative social and environmental innovation, to deliver community education for you, via our programmes:

  1. Community learning
  2. Social enterprise
  3. Programme management with infrastructure support
  4. Well-being programmes
  5. Volunteering
  6. Sustainability, climate change and eco-philosophy initiatives
  7. International co-operation in our communities
  8. Wildlife and animal welfare
  9. Arts and cultural heritage
  10. Landscape and natural heritage270121_112696258823718_2007637_n

Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative is a not-for-profit Community Interest Company, endeavouring to work to specified ethical guidelines.

Your Community:
Our stakeholders are our local communities. Our areas of benefit are Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Rutland, Northamptonshire, Staffordshire, S. Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire. We also foster international co-operation in our communities, sharing best practice and rolling out resources to some of the poorest communities in the world.

Co-operation and Collaboration:
We build and lead partnerships, seeking funding to deliver and manage programmes with integral volunteer and infrastructure support. Partnerships are the key to our work. Be involved in delivering excellent benefits with us.
Links to the websites of our key partners are displayed in the Blogroll on the right, please click on the links.

Help us to:

• Facilitate learning
• Foster opportunities for increased welfare, well-being, quality of life, happiness and enjoyment
• Foster equity, equality and ethical communities
• Contribute to social, environmental and economic welfare and benefits for our society
• Enable access to cultural heritage and natural heritage experience
• Increase an understanding that human, animal and environmental well-being are integrated and can be promoted by responsible, compassionate and sustainable lifestyles

Support us:

Sponsor: a resource or event, large or small and receive a free environmental check list
Volunteer: to raise funds. Can you sew, take wildlife photographs or organise a bake sale? Tell us your ideas
Buy our Services or Goods: ask us how we can deliver learning programmes for your users, staff or at an event or visit our sales pages.


The Dawn Chorus Trials Garden and Nursery and our “Grow-How, helping to grow” project

The Dawn Chorus ” Grow-How: helping to grow” project was established in 1985. We aim to share best practice in growing organic heritage plants, including wild flowers, food crops and native trees and shrubs. This summer has been busy. 30 heritage vegetable varieties, 25 heritage fruit varieties, 30 wildflower varieties & 35 native tree & shrub varieties have been propagated & grown on in the Dawn Chorus trials garden to distribute & use for educational purposes & as part of our learning/skills development initiative. Lincolnshire Snake Beans are growing well, to produce seed for the UN” Year of the Pulse” project 2016. Heritage vegetable plants have again been given to local schools and nurseries for children’s educational activities.Our “Grow How: helping to grow” project, developed social media tools that have been take up by people looking for practical solutions.

Below: we have been growing heritage lettuce “Stoke” from our own seed for twenty years.


We create wild life habitats and showcase beneficial gardens. Hedgehog feeding & monitoring is continuing with groups of hedgehogs being fed & catalyzing publicity for the wider community to be involved in hedgehog welfare. Biological records are maintained, eg: a hummingbird hawk moth recorded on red valerian, then became a popular social media post. Volunteers and children have been comparing designs of insect hotels and pictures have been put on to social media to draw attention to the project.

We think that organic practice is important. 80% of flowering plants, including food plants, are pollinated by bees, yet pesticides are decimating our beneficial insect population. Just think, a single wheat grain treated with neonicotinoid ( the most widely used pesticide on the planet) will kill a song bird.

10383879_693333670759971_3069186374946350191_n 10568943_701522713274400_6784757305317774545_n


We plan Summers filled with fun, bringing people and communities together. This resource project feeds into social, therapeutic and educational activities that share and develop skills for employability and enrich peoples lives and wellbeing. The programmes increase the confidence and achievements of vulnerable people and promote mindfulness and healthy diet whilst offering people “a change of scene” by getting them out into nature and encouraging green gym activities. Our working partner John, said: “healthy earth creates healthy life”. Below: children’s activities, fun  cress growing and pea-pod play.

10518013_681076451985693_2976647479207584976_n 10258334_805962046163799_4289733908214452747_n

We have a riot of seedlings and cuttings in propagation. The abundance of energy in the sprouting seedlings encapsulates the potential of green economy and sustainable communities. We work alone and in partnership to deliver environmental learning. This Dawn Chorus project is much in demand in the communities: stimulating organic horticultural and nature conservation activities; inspiring healthy food growing; developing understanding of the issues surrounding pollinating insects and soil and water conservation and saving heritage seeds.

Below: seedlings of heritage cress; globe artichokes and Indian mustard.




Nature Mandalas

Mandala is the Sanskrit word for circle. Mandalas often have radiating patterns and can be found in nature; a good example is tree rings. Our stress-busting nature mandala events allow everyone to join in with this creative yet tranquil activity.



The patterns can be simple or complex. We use natural materials or, as part of our healthy eating projects, plant-based food items. Would you like to join us to make huge mandalas with piles of apples as part of our orchard projects?


Food Growing and Heritage Plants: project overview.



Above, fields of British wildflowers in the East Midlands.

Our heritage plants projects include ancient trees, traditional orchards, heirloom vegetable growing and seed saving as part of a sustainable plant-based diet, and wild plants and flowers.

Below: child feeling heritage French beans, pumpkin bed and traditional orchard medlar fruit.




We raise awareness of the importance of open pollinated plants and the need to create a healthy environment for pollinating insects.

Below insect pollinated heritage garden plants.