Surrey Heathland Project

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Lowland heath is a globally rare and unique habitat supporting a variety of specialised plants and animals. Two hundred years ago heathland covered most of West Surrey. Urban development, forestry and neglect have resulted in loss of the habitat such that less than a fifth of the original heathland remains.To redress this loss, in December 1989 the Heathland Project was set up to protect and enhance lowland heathland in Surrey. Work included practical land management, providing advice, working with local communities and the re-introduction of grazing to some heathland sites. Most of the practical work, including managing the grazing programme, was done by Project staff and volunteers, with the occasional use of contractors for larger jobs. For more detail on the work we do and historical facts, see Heathland Project reference section.

In 2002, the Surrey Heathland Project began ‘Surrey’s Last Wilderness’. This is part of ‘Tomorrow’s Heathland Heritage’ , a national programme run by English Nature with substantial funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund. It has set out to tackle the enormous challenges facing this rare habitat and is a major mechanism for meeting national biodiversity targets on heathland, see link to English Nature website.

Contact details

Project Manager – Dr Rob McGibbon
Senior Project Officer – Marcus Turley

Project Officer – Christina Smith

Surrey Heathland Project, Artington House, Portsmouth Road, Guildford, Surrey GU2 4DZ
e-mail:rob.mcgibbon@surreycc.gov.uk
Telephone: 01483 579713
Fax: 01483 579740


The Heathland Project is supported by:

Surrey County Council, Guildford Borough Council, Waverley Borough Council, Woking Borough Council, Runnymede Borough Council, Witley Parish Council, Wonersh Parish Council, RSPB, English Nature, MoD and the Herpetological Conservation Trust

Surrey County Council
working in partnership
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