Wilder Horsham District project celebrates three years of boosting biodiversity

Published: 01 Nov 2023

Wilder Horsham

The Wilder Horsham District project, delivered by a unique partnership between Horsham District Council and Sussex Wildlife Trust, is celebrating three years of supporting nature recovery in the Horsham District.

The project issued its 2023 Annual Report recently which showcases its major achievements for the year.

These include:

  • Supporting landowners to protect and sustain breeding habitats, establishing more natural grazing, building habitat links and introducing flood management measures.
  • Delivering support to parish councils and community groups through workshops, site visits, habitat management guidance and more.
  • Recruiting an additional resource to support the work of some 53 conservation volunteers to deliver a range of nature recovery tasks.
  • Giving funding and support to five new recipients of the Nature Recovery Award, all contributing towards the creation of a Nature Recovery Network in Horsham District.

Commenting on the success of the partnership and its contribution to improving biodiversity locally, Horsham District Council Cabinet Member for Climate Action and Nature Recovery Cllr Colette Blackburn said:

We are delighted to see the continuing progress of the Wilder Horsham District partnership project in delivering our shared aims of protecting and enhancing the rich natural life of the District.

“We will continue to work with key organisations and the project team to encourage, inspire and support individuals, landowners and community groups to reverse the decline in nature, and create better and more connected habitats.

“My thanks go out to our amazing army of volunteers without whom all our great work would not be possible.”

Sussex Wildlife Trust Director of Conservation Henri Brocklebank added:

This year’s report shows that the project is proving successful in enabling communities and individuals across the District to play a significant role in delivering the partnership’s priorities in recovering the natural environment.

“This five- year project is now really delivering momentum for change.”

The report also highlights the work with other key organisations such as West Sussex County Council and neighbouring authorities to develop joint projects that will help to deliver the Nature Recovery Network. This includes the Weald to Waves scheme and the Adur River Recovery project.

Landowners or community groups who have a project idea to help expand and improve networks for wildlife across their local landscape, in both urban and rural areas, are invited to apply for a Nature Recovery Award.  The scheme facilitates projects of any size up to a maximum of £5,000. The current funding round will close on Thursday 30 November. To find out more or submit an application go to the Sussex Wildlife Trust website.

For more information about the Wilder Horsham District project and to read the Annual Report for 2022-2023 visit the Council’s website at www.horsham.gov.uk/climate-and-environment/wilderhorshamdistrict/about-wilder-horsham-district