Exhibition - How Ashdown Forest was saved for the nation

April 15, 2022 - June 30, 202211:00 am - 4:30 pm

Exhibition – How Ashdown Forest was saved for the nation

An exhibition by the Ashdown Forest Research Group.

Just over 30 years ago Ashdown Forest came within a whisker of being broken up and sold off to private investors.  The exhibition describes how a high profile campaign excited national and international media attention. It includes profiles of the celebrities and others who helped to save the Forest.

The exhibition will also reveal two other major threats at that time — oil exploration and the ‘Hurricane’ — that made the campaign to avert the break-up of Ashdown Forest even more urgent.

 

Dawn on the Forest

April 23, 20225:00 am - 7:30 am

Dawn on the Forest

The first in a series of guided walks taking place throughout the year, with local guide Tom Forward.

 

Probably the best time of day to experience the forest, before the hustle and bustle of daily life gets going, those who embrace the early start will be rewarded with the dawn chorus and the chance of encounters with the more secretive wildlife that calls the forest home.

 

Your expert guide will help you tune into the different bird songs and identify the species unique to this landscape. We’ll finish with a steaming mug of tea or coffee and pastries.

 

Tickets can be booked through Eventbrite:

Saturday 23rd April:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/dawn-on-the-forest-tickets-290469982537

 

About your guide, Tom Forward:

Tom Forward

 

Born on the edge of Ashdown Forest, his childhood was spent exploring the woodlands, ghyll streams, bogs, and heaths, looking for deer, snakes, and birds of prey. The freedom to roam this special landscape led to his choice of career as an ecologist and environmental educator, and lifelong a desire to help protect wildlife. With a degree in Environmental Management and 20 years’ experience in the field, through roles at Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary in southern India, Field Studies Council, Sussex Wildlife Trust, and Commonwork Trust, Tom is an all-round naturalist who has wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm to share with visitors.

Tom lives on Ashdown Forest and now works as a freelance ecologist and wildlife guide at locations across Sussex, Surrey and Kent, including the Knepp Estate (renowned rewilding project), Royal Botanical Gardens Kew Wakehurst and Bore Place Organic Farm.

“Ashdown Forest hosts some remarkable species and there is always something to see from special plants and insects, to secretive reptiles and rare birds, or simply the spectacular sweeping views over the High Weald and beyond. There’s nothing I enjoy more than tuning visitors’ eyes and ears into the landscape, leaving them with a new appreciation of the place and a memorable experience.”

Secrets of the Forest

April 23, 20229:00 am - 12:00 pm

Secrets of the Forest

The second guided walk with Tom Forward will explore the secret nature of Ashdown Forest.

 

Ashdown Forest is a wildlife-lovers hotspot and there are many highlights to look out for throughout the year. Your guide will try to get you onto the best of the season whether it’s the beautiful songs of the woodlarks and willow warblers, special insects such as the silver-studded blue butterfly and small red damselfly, or the bizarre carnivorous plant – the round-leaved sundew.

 

This walk will also touch on the vital management work that goes on to maintain and enhance the rare heathland habitats.

 

Tickets can be booked through Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/secrets-of-the-forest-tickets-293089778417

 

General events notes

The walk will be on foot over varied, and occasionally hilly terrain. Participants should be prepared with suitable outdoor clothing for the weather conditions and sturdy footwear. Walks go at a gentle pace with frequent stops and may cover up to 5km in distance, so a moderate level of fitness is required.

A refreshing drink and a light snack will be served during the event. Please let us know on booking whether you have any dietary requirements.

 

Binoculars recommended.

 

Suitable for ages 14yrs +. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

 

No dogs.

 

Please note that we cannot guarantee the target species. Both wildlife and the British weather are unpredictable, but there’s always something to see and experience, whatever the weather.

 

About your guide, Tom Forward:

Tom Forward

 

Born on the edge of Ashdown Forest, his childhood was spent exploring the woodlands, ghyll streams, bogs, and heaths, looking for deer, snakes, and birds of prey. The freedom to roam this special landscape led to his choice of career as an ecologist and environmental educator, and lifelong a desire to help protect wildlife. With a degree in Environmental Management and 20 years’ experience in the field, through roles at Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary in southern India, Field Studies Council, Sussex Wildlife Trust, and Commonwork Trust, Tom is an all-round naturalist who has wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm to share with visitors.

Tom lives on Ashdown Forest and now works as a freelance ecologist and wildlife guide at locations across Sussex, Surrey and Kent, including the Knepp Estate (renowned rewilding project), Royal Botanical Gardens Kew Wakehurst and Bore Place Organic Farm.

“Ashdown Forest hosts some remarkable species and there is always something to see from special plants and insects, to secretive reptiles and rare birds, or simply the spectacular sweeping views over the High Weald and beyond. There’s nothing I enjoy more than tuning visitors’ eyes and ears into the landscape, leaving them with a new appreciation of the place and a memorable experience.”

Exhibition – How Ashdown Forest was saved for the Nation 

The exhibition by Ashdown Forest Research Group is on display at the Ashdown Forest Centre.  Opening times may vary, depending on volunteer availability.

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