Happy anniversary to Surrey Wildlife Trust!
Surrey Wildlife Trust is celebrating its 60th anniversary of protecting the county’s wildlife this week and has a range of events to mark the milestone.
On 21st March, 1959, a band of naturalists and conservationists founded the Surrey Naturalists’ Trust with two goals – to protect wildlife and educate the public about nature – these tenets are still fundamental to the Trust today.
While much work has been carried out over the past 60 years to ensure they have stayed true to this since securing the first reserve in 1960, Seale Chalk Pit on the Hog’s Back to saving the ancient woodland Nower Wood, near Leatherhead to creating a new reserve in 2013 called Priest Hill.
Today the Trust manages more than 70 reserves, has more than 26,000 members and is supported by in excess of 1,000 volunteers who won The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service last year.
2019 marks a new milestone for the Trust with new chief executive officer Sarah Jane Chimbwandira and a new strategy to reconnect the landscape with nature recovery networks. Healthy and well-managed hedgerows, rivers, nature reserves and green spaces will help people and wildlife flourish.
Sarah Jane said: “If we all take action now, in 60 years’ time wildlife could be thriving and at the heart of everyday life. If not, we may not even notice that wildlife has disappeared from Surrey’s precious landscape, being replaced by litter and pollution. And all because we think it’s someone else’s job to look after it; it isn’t.
“We all have to take action and we all have to look after Surrey’s landscape like our early founders and volunteers.”
She adds: “We welcome everyone to get involved. Anyone can be the next leading environmentalist in Surrey. Could it be you?”
The Trust has walks, talks and events planned over the next few months to celebrate its 60 years beginning with an environmental youth summit for 16-18 year olds on 28th March.
Picture: David Attenborough visits Nower Wood in 1985