Event type:
Virtual Event
Date and time:
Microsoft Teams
SMS Event

A conference and networking event is the first in a series, celebrating the wide ranging project work our stakeholders are achieving in delivering sustainable land management to improve the resilience of Wales’ natural resources and realising the benefits these provide to communities across Wales.

We plan to draw stakeholders together to share best practice and to stimulate ideas and discussion; to showcase how the project partnerships are delivering collaborative, landscape scale, sustainable land management, successfully implementing nature based solutions to tackle the challenges facing our Environment & communities.

Agenda for the day:


09:50 - Join meeting link for audio & video check

10:00 - Welcome Message and Introductions, Catherine Hughes             -  Chair

Catherine Hughes

Catherine Hughes has been working with SMS schemes from its inception and worked with the Nature Fund before. She has worked with a variety of groups of farmers - uplands and lowlands across Wales, to start to encourage new ideas/ways of working together and pulling in all interested parties to build more joined up collaborative approaches to address the challenges of our natural resources. Engaging with the public - a key part of the SMS projects - has been so encouraging and the appetite of teachers in primary schools has been so incredible says Catherine who wants to see all Welsh children better connected with their local landscape. This is the group that will  influence the change needed to build resilience into our landscape, she says, pointing to the mental health charity MIND also who just loved getting out and involved with the projects and which will be a group to get much more involved with especially with the implications of the pandemic. Catherine believes that the SMS projects have changed hearts and minds. Catherine has helped project manage the Powys Moorland Partnership project which has just completed its third year.  Catherine lives in Hay on Wye with husband Johnny and two children Carys 16 and Huw 15.

10:10                                    LIVE Project Presentation,                                                                   Black Mountains Land use                                                                  Partnership (BMLP) –  Louise Moon                                                 and Phil Stocker

Phil Stocker

Phil Stocker is Chair of the Black Mountains Land Use Partnership and has also chaired the Project Board for the duration of the SMS Project. His day job is CEO of the National Sheep Association and he is both proud and privileged to be able to support this innovative and ground-breaking partnership. Phil has a practical farming background and, in the interests of sanity, continues to keep a small flock of sheep alongside his busy role with the NSA. Phil has close connections with the Black Mountains area and is passionate about the place, the partnership, and its objectives.




Louise Moon

Louise Moon is the Black Mountains Land Use Partnership’s Project Manager. Louise joined the Partnership in 2018 having previously worked in the UK Civil Service, universities and heritage organisations managing a variety of partnerships and projects. With a PhD in social and cultural history exploring human connections to landscapes and ‘culturescapes’, she is also engaged in promoting understanding of uplands culture. Louise managed and administered the SMS Project alongside the Partnership itself and is now delivering the Partnership Transition Project co-funded by statutory body partners.



10:30                       LISTEN- Podcast
                    Powys Moorland Partnership reflection                                                of their project – part 1


10:45       --------------------------------   BREAK  --------------------------------

11:00                         2 minutes silence to mark Remembrance Day

Lewis Stallard (Project Delivery)

11:00                         LIVE Project Presentation of                                            RSPB Gwent Level-                                                           Lewis Stallard

Lewis is a Sustainable Landscapes Officer with the RSPB and project manages the SMS funded Sustaining the Gwent Levels project. He holds a master’s degree in the science of sustainable food production and his experience includes nearly 10 years as a Project Manager on various reconstruction missions in the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa.

11:30                                       WATCH - Video 
                                               Awel Mehefin Jones,                                                                             Fferm Ifan SMS Project Manager

Awel Jones

Awel Jones - Fferm Ifan SMS Project Manager
I live on Pant Glas farm in Padog and I'm married to Mei, one of the Fferm Ifan farmers, and we have three children - Elan, Eiry and Ifan. I had the bright idea over two years ago to apply for the Fferm Ifan SMS Project Manager post and here I am still with them! In between trying to manage the 11 Fferm Ifan farmers and 3 lively children, I enjoy being outdoors either going for a walk, running, gardening or hiking - and of course helping Mei when needed!! I love the Welsh language and everything Welsh and feel so blessed to live at the amazing place where I call "adre" ('home').



11:50               LIVE Project Presentation
                         Rachel Harvey - Snowdonia National Park                                         Association – Welsh peatlands

Dr. Rachel Harvey - Rheolwr Prosiect CRC Mawndiroedd Cymru / Welsh Peatlands SMS project manager
After completing a PhD on salt marsh carbon stocks and fluxes, Rachel’s career has taken a varied route exploring topics as diverse as extreme flooding impacts on agricultural soils, quantifying salt marsh ecosystem services across Wales, and surveying and monitoring a range of catchment and upland peatland sites. She has even somehow found herself creating the official maps of Guinea for the Guinean government! 

A central theme through (most of) these roles was understanding the impact of people and the environment on carbon and other ecosystem services, something that Rachel wanted to explore further in her role as a project officer for the Welsh Peatlands SMS project. After a year of mapping, surveying and restoring peatlands across Wales, working with the newly developed Peatland Code, and educating the public on the many benefits of peatland restoration, Rachel took on the role of project manager. Rachel now spends her time working with the many project partners to improve the state of Welsh peatlands and expanding peatland research capacity, knowledge and understanding across Wales, although she does still find time for a field trip or two every now and then. 

12:15        ---------------------------  Lunch BREAK ----------------------------

13:00                                               LIVE DISCUSSION

Catherine Hughes

Catherine Hughes - Chair         Sustainable Management Scheme- Sharing project achievements & Lessons learnt 





14:25    --------------------------------   BREAK  -----------------------------------

14:30                           WATCH - Video 
                                 Dolau Dyfi SMS – PONT 

14:40           Project Presentation
                   Payments for outcomes – Tir a Mor llyn: Land and                           Sea - Gwynedd County Council- Arwel Jones

Arwel Jones

Arwel Jones, one of the project managers working on the Tir a Môr Llŷn project that has been delivering terrestrial and marine projects for the last three years. His interests and expertise are in delivering landscape scale projects that develop and implement sustainable business models that complement the strengths of rural areas. The focus is on building capacity through knowledge transfer and developing new learning networks for the benefit of present and future generations.



15:00                WATCH
                         Dunes 2 Dunes project video
                          - Sustainable Management of Bridgend Coastal                               Landscape - Bridgend County Borough Council


15:15 ----------------------  CLOSING REMARKS  -----------------------------