Meet the Team
Here some of the busy bees that form our amazing team here at KCA. Thanks to some generous funding, we have recently been able to welcome some new talent to our team. We're excited to introduce you to the fresh faces that have joined us as well as some of the more familiar ones that have been involved in our community action group since its inception.
We are extremely grateful to our funders that support our projects and outreach with core funding or project-specific funding. Our core funding courtesy of Devon Environment Foundation, Devon Community Foundation and The Halleria Trust has enabled us to create some small paid roles to help keep our work ticking over effectively.
I’m proud to be a founding member of this proactive organisation that is stepping up to create local, achievable and joyful action on the ground. As Project Coordinator for KCA I lead on some of our bigger projects like the Kingsbridge Repair Café and Kingsbridge Nature Festival, keep us focussed with strategy as well as keeping an eye on the many operational things that happen in the background.
I love connecting people and building community around meaningful things like reducing landfill through repair or taking action for nature. I’m a collaborator who believes passionately in the power of collective action to make positive change happen.
I live for my time spent out in nature and I’m never happier than when walking the coast path, roaming the moors or gazing up at the moon somewhere. Nature is my balm and taking the time to connect with it helps restore and fortify me so I can focus on challenging things like thinking about climate change!
In addition to my time with KCA, I help manage small grants and projects for a local learning disability charity and recently started a new role working on some district-wide climate and nature projects with Sustainable South Hams. I’ll be spending the next few years studying towards an MSc in Sustainability and Behaviour Change and am excited to embed the learning into our grassroots work here, as we shift towards the transformational changes needed to adapt to climate change and regenerate nature.
Comms and Project Support
(Biodiversity and Citizen Science)
Chloe has worked the majority of her adult life within Wildlife conservation. She has a BSc (hons) Conservation biology, a Masters in Antrozoology, a diploma in Wildlife care and numerous trainings in Wildlife rescue, environmental research and management.
My passion for nature began from an early age, due to growing up at an outdoor activity and environmental education centre in the South Hams. I spent most of my childhood out on the water, or exploring the surrounding landscape. Being in nature is by far where I feel most at home. Quite literally Sat in a field or by the ocean !
I lived a great deal of my adult life abroad, working in wildlife conservation and environmental management. Brazil, Costa Rica and Africa are where i have spent the most of my time. I have seen first hand some of the devastating impacts human behaviour has had on the planet, wildlife and people.
I’m passionate about bridging the gap between humans and nature and establishing positive and meaningful ways to live in a balanced and more mindful way.
Comms and Project Support
(Education, Estuary and Biodiversity)
With an innate love of nature from an early age, my life so far has been one of purposeful exploration and wildlife conservation advocacy. Armed with a BSc (Hons) in Geology and Geography, I later pursued education whilst living in Australia and earned a BEd. These were followed with Diplomas in travel writing, editing and photography.
For a decade, I worked as a PADI dive instructor, immersing myself in the marine environment across Australia, the Bahamas, the Dominican Republic, Galapagos Islands and Vanuatu.
My passions lie in nurturing the next generations appreciation for our environment, recognising them as the future guardians of our planet. The past two decades of my life have been dedicated to education, particularly in the marine field. I have taught marine education at Sea World, Australia, as well as primary and secondary schools in both Australia and England and was the sole nature guide on a humpback whale watching boat in Australia. Fuelled by this vision, I am equally passionate about wildlife photography and scientific research, delving into the intricacies of animal behaviour and the preservation of our natural heritage.
Comms and Project Support
(Food & Growing, Waste & Resources and
I believe there to be great power in community and collective action, I am always interested in finding out how we can turn me to we and work together to galvanise positive change.
Surfing is my favourite activity in the whole world followed closely by wild swimming. Being out in nature is a tonic for modern life and seeing the effects of pollution and climate breakdown first hand motivates me to spread the word that now is the time to take action, we can’t wait for someone else (i.e. politicians and big business) to do it for us.
I practice and teach somatic embodied yoga. Finding ways to regulate our nervous system and stay centered is an absolute must in the eco-anxiety-inducing times. We can’t take action if we’re overwhelmed by fear so we need practical tools to help get ourselves un-stuck and stuck into action. Practicing yoga means I can be in the present moment to experience life and be fully here for all of it.
'Shelley Castle is an eco-artist who works with communities to co-create work that explores and celebrates the beauty and wonder of local wildlife such as seahorses or forests.
She is a long-term activist and believes that without community and creativity, the multiple issues of social, ecological and climate injustice cannot be successfully challenged.
She says: 'Now is the time to come together across all our differences and demand our leaders support the urgent need to make a liveable world for the future not only of our children but that of a multitude of other species. We need to reconnect to the fact that we are entirely reliant on this life support system which is currently showing all the signs of being fatally sick. But it is also a system that recovers with extraordinary speed - so there is every hope for the future as long as we treat the climate and nature emergency as just that - an emergency.'
Having been a member of Greenpeace for decades and living (since 2016) in the Kingsbridge area, my involvement with the setting up of Kingsbridge Climate Action (I’m currently a ‘Co-Chair’) and becoming a Kingsbridge Town Councillor (with a particular focus on Climate and Nature matters) were ‘natural’ steps for me.
Outside of that, and amongst other things, I take part in a wide variety of nature monitoring projects (Bats, Birds, Butterflies and other insects), support tree planting locally and globally and write regularly to our local MP and the Prime Minister challenging our country’s woeful performance on national climate action delivery (a seemingly never ending task).
With two children and 3 (soon to be four) grandchildren, my concern about the future of our planet has a personal dimension but millions elsewhere are of course already being acutely and grossly unfairly impacted by the worsening effects of Climate Change and damage to Nature.
I’m not a very political person, but I do feel the need to do something about climate change. Even since I’ve lived in Kingsbridge – 15 years, the climate has got noticeably warmer. I’m old enough to remember the winter of 1963 when the whole country froze for 3 months. Can you believe it? So we have to change the way we live if we wish to survive. I feel very fortunate to live in beautiful South Hams, and to work with very friendly and inspiring people like Rosa, Paul, Shelley and the other members of KCA.
We run a B&B at the top of Fore Street, and I sing and play the classical guitar. I can’t run any more – dodgy knees, but I enjoy getting out on my bicycle to tackle these infernal Devon Hills. I’m resisting the temptation of an electric bike, but I’m not sure for how long. I’m a pretty good cook.
We’ve been running a VW e-up for nearly 10 years, and done 80,000 miles, and love it. Electric cars are not perfect, and there have been a few nail-biting times when we’ve nearly run out of battery. I do miss the free heater you get in a petrol car, and filling the tank up is so much easier than the recharging process. But they’re great to drive & v reliable (touch wood), and we’ll never go back to
petrol or diesel.
I have been part of KCA since its earliest days when a group of us were trying to find ways to raise awareness locally to the consequences of climate change and to learn what we can do to improve the situation. Now we have found our modus operandi and are organising amazing local events.
As well as local action, I am deeply interested in learning what it is that drives our seemingly unstoppable race towards climate collapse – the psychology of our whole culture, our values and the financial system that allows and encourages such inequalities in wealth and poverty, such that some people live in great luxury, while others live in poverty, with cold homes and are facing ill health, homelessness and addictions that can lead to crime and social unrest.
I cannot see how our western way of life can continue for many more years into the future without coming to a sticky end. Yet I am also ever hopeful that the wise and loving side of humanity will lead us to a more healthy and inclusive ways of living in our world, and also that new technology will lead to lessening the damage that is being done.