Wed. Jun 26th, 2024

Rewilding Tolworth

By Bakar Hassan Oct 28, 2022
tree at tolworth reserve

Kingston council’s ambitious project to turn Tolworth Court Farm Fields into a leading nature reserve.

Few people know about Tolworth Court Farm Fields, and even fewer know about the rewilding plans to turn it into a great nature reserve the community can be proud of.

Situated in Tolworth, the park covers 43.3 acres and became a nature reserve in 2004. Since then Kingston University students on different courses have interacted with the reserve with the help of organisations like Community Brain.

Course leader of MA sustainable design Paul Micklethwaite said: “Community Brain reaches out to different sectors of the University to bring us all together in a way that we might not have done otherwise. Community Brain is the glue that’s keeping it all together.”

A study done by The Community Brain found that less than 5% of Tolworth residents had actually visited the reserve at all, highlighting that there is much more work to be done to raise awareness for this ambitious project.

The project includes increasing a wide array of wildlife, ranging from storks and deer to vegetation, improving the biodiversity of the area as a whole.

sign at tolworth reserve
Tolworth reserve sign. Photo: Bakar Hassan

The site is an important link in the chain of such reserves locally and could provide a rare opportunity to allow the movement of wildlife across the area.

Kingston council’s biodiversity officer Elliot Newton said: “We need to make sure that Kingston is permeable and has green space and that wildlife can move out of Richmond park and can move north and south across Kingston”

The project has the potential to become a local attraction as well as bringing even more people interested in nature to Kingston.

Nina Verulashvili, a visitor to the reserve said: “I only came here to visit my friends, but once the project is finished, I can definitely see myself visiting the reserve more often in the future.”

Many courses provide students a chance to study the project, however for students whose courses don’t cover the reserve there are many other ways to get involved, most notably through Kingston council-led events as well as other organisations such as Citizen Zoo and The Community Brain.

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