Conserving Greyton & Surrounds Since 1978
The Conservation Society
GCS cares about the nature and wilderness around us, the people who live here, our unique village atmosphere, and how we all interact to create a healthy ecosystem
GCS supports the Theewaterskloof Municipality in conserving and managing Greyton Nature Reserve and the surrounding commonage. GCS is Greyton’s Heritage Western Cape partner and provides input to preserve the historic built environment and character of the village. GCS is bound by its constitution and answerable to its members.
What we care about
Conserving Natural Environment
Conserving Greyton’s natural environment – including endangered biomes, hydrological systems, maintaining ecological connectivity and effective management of Greyton Nature Reserve.
Protect & Enhance Historical Village
Protect and enhance the village character of Greyton including the historical and cultural origins, heritage, architecture, streetscapes, lei-water system, market and urban green spaces
Mitigating Human Impact
Mitigating human impact on Greyton’s environment by strengthening a responsible connection and softening the edges between the village and the natural surroundings
Species diversity of indigenous vegetation
Heterogeneity of species distribution
Heterogeneity of indigenous vegetation age & structure
Co-occurring biodiversity, including small mammals, birds, herpetofauna & insects
Co-occurring large herbivores & predators
Regular fire (at ‘appropriate’ intervals)
Wetland quality & dynamics
Water retention of indigenous vegetation & soil
Water flow dynamics (over disparate time periods, e.g. seasonal & day)
Wetland extent & dynamics
Associated indigenous riparian & wetland vegetation
Associated aquatic animal life including fish & insects
Associated animal life dependent on the water
Indigenous vegetation in transformed areas
Vegetation diversity in species & structure in transformed areas
Unimpeded flow of wildlife species
Historic buildings maintained / restored
Architectural style maintained
Access to culturally important sites
Use of biodiversity
Opportunities for access
Stewardship of heritage (natural and village)
The Nature Reserve, arguably Greyton’s greatest asset, was established by Professor Brian Rycroft on 13 May 1977. At the time he was Director of Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. The reserve is approximately 2200 hectares in extent and stretches up to the peaks of Uitkyk, Wa en Osse and Perdekop and as far as “point high” on the Boesmanskloof trail to McGregor.
Restoration is at the heart of and the true motivation of the GCS invasive alien management plan. By removing invasive aliens in most instances the natural fynbos or renosterveld restores. The benefits to biodiversity, reduced fire threat to the village and surrounds and the water run off become apparent very quickly. A natural landscape contributes to a feeling of wellbeing to those who spend time outdoors bolstering Greyton’s tourism offering.
The Greyton Baboon Program is almost unique in the Western Cape. It is a volunteer run program supported financially by residents and the municipality. By getting on the ground before baboons became too habituated we are able to herd them out of the village without using violence.
The Greyton Village Market began some time in the 1980’s as a stall selling excess produce and is now the spot where the village and it’s weekend visitors get together every Saturday morning form 9.30 to 12. A fee based on percentage turnover and not an exorbitant flat fee enables everyone to trade as long as they make and sell their own products, and that they reside in the Overberg.
Join us, get involved, enjoy Greyton! There is so much to do and participate in that not only contributes to Greyton, it’s surrounds and nature but that is also really fun! From the market to the hacks to hiking trails and MTB. Make the most of being in this wonderful little town.