The Environment Committee supports a variety of initiatives through donations, ‘sweat equity’, and/or a combination of both. Here are some of our activities:
  • Sponsorship of the River Safety Program for Grade 2 classes in Stratford – delivered by UTRCA
  • River Clean Up – every Monday morning from May until September, pairs of Rotarians circle the Avon River to collect debris
  • Creation of a Waste & Recycling Policy for the Rotary Club of Stratford for use at its special events and its weekly meetings
  • Support for special projects related to the Environment – for example, speakers at the Environmental Forum, the Ellice Swamp Rail Trail, planting of cattails in the Avon River near the Romeo Street bridge, and sponsorship of trees for the Fryfogel Inn arboretum
  • Participation in the ‘Adopt a Highway’ program
If you have an idea for something beneficial to the environment, please speak to us – we care about our planet and the footprint we’re making.
Ellice and Gadshill Swamps are two significant wetland areas north of Stratford in the Municipality of Perth East. They contain headwaters for the Avon River and Black Creek in addition to providing habitat for a wide variety of animals, birds and regionally significant plant life.
In 2009, an Interpretive ‘Rail Trail’ was created from Line 52 near the intersection of Road 126 on a diagonal to Line 46 between Roads 126 and 122. The ‘Rail Trail’ skirts a wetland often used by migratory fowl, several areas with unusual plants, and a section of woodland typical of a southern Ontario hardwood bush.
There are signs telling about these local flora and fauna both at the entrance to the Trail (on Line 52) and part-way along the railbed. The Trail is an easy walk for daytrippers, the owners of energetic dogs (and their dogs), families, and Brownie and Cub groups.


The ‘Rail Trail’ is accessed by travelling north from Stratford on Road 119 until you see the sign for Line 52. Turn left and travel two roads. You will see the entrance sign on your left just before reaching the intersection with Road 126.
The ‘Rail Trail’ was created through donations from: T-D Friends of the Environment Rotary Club of Stratford Upper Thames River Conservation Authority Stratford and Perth Community Foundation Friends of Ellice and Gads Hill Swamps Perth Stewardship Network
It is maintained by the Friends of Ellice and Gads Hill Swamps, the Rotary Club of Stratford, and the UTRCA.
The Trail is handicapped-friendly – there are boardwalks over the lower, sometimes wet parts, and the railbed portion of the Trail is flat.
See more about these important wetlands at: http://www.thamesriver.on.ca/wetlands_and_natural_areas/images/Ellice & Gads Hill Guiding Document.pdf