For the past fifty years, the Sussex Wildlife Trust have been battling to bring back some of this lost wildlife. Some of the sites where we’re doing this have been our own nature reserves, but we’ve also been invited to help by other owners of downland sites who don’t have the expertise to perform this critical work.
It’s not easy - numerous surveys to establish what might be possible; often thousands of hours of scrub removal by both contractors and volunteers; installing miles of fencing and water troughs on difficult, steep terrain; regular monitoring of the wildlife as it starts to return; and then ongoing maintenance work and improvement, forever.
We love doing it, and we love the fact that more and more people are returning to the Downs, and bringing their children, to once again enjoy all the wildlife that our grandparents took for granted. But it’s expensive. Machinery and tools, contractors, fencing materials, vets’ bills, livestock and animal husbandry - it all adds up, but it’s really worth it to see the orchids blooming and hear the skylarks singing again.
That’s why we’re asking you to help us.
Please help us to raise £40,000 to continue to fund this work for the next three years. Finances are becoming tighter for everyone now, but for charities like ours it can mean the difference between continuing to safeguard our wildlife and countryside heritage or letting it slip away, possibly forever. Any donation you can make will go directly towards protecting our Sussex Downs - for now and into the future.