What we do

OUR AIMS

  • Create, Sustain and Enhance Kent’s Landscape & its wildlife
  • Develop, Manage and Support community-based environmental initiatives
  • Develop, and Promote life long outdoor learning
  • Encourage and Enhance greater access in the outdoors and the corresponding health benefits.

Since 1988 we have delivering these aims through many practical conservation projects throughout the Medway catchment and in the boroughs of Maidstone and Tonbridge & Malling.

OUR PROJECTS

We currently have 14 active conservation projects that are being delivered, including;

  • Managing traditional orchards in Yalding
  • Delivering natural flood management schemes
  • Controlling invasive species catchment wide
  • Working as part of the national meadow restoration scheme – Save our Magnificent Meadows.

We work with many partners in the public, private and third sectors. We offer opportunities to volunteer, train and learn, see our activities page for more details. To find out more visit the Our Projects page

Carder Bee feeding on Red Clover

WORKING WITH US

We carry out a huge range of projects, activities, events and community engagement. We work with communities and local authorities, directly with landowners, schools, colleges and myriad specialist conservation groups in Kent. We are able develop and deliver project opportunities in a number of ways.

Project ideas

We help define and develop project ideas, aiding group development, site management planning, sourcing grants and lending practical support.

Sourcing external funding

We are active in seeking external funding for most of the work that we undertake, and help communities and volunteers to find grant money as and when they need it. We are happy to advise and work in partnership with other like minded organisations.

Providing opportunities for wildlife Enabling and carrying out conservation management, restoration and replacement of key habitats, including chalk grassland, ancient woodland, hedgerows, ponds and verges.

Conserving character

Enabling work to conserve traditional landscape features that comprise the North Downs and low weald landscapes, such as hedgerows, traditional orchards, ponds, copses and shaws. See the Kent Downs Landscape Design Guide for more details.

Working at key sites

Our key sites includes Yalding Fen where we work in partnership with the land-owner St Modwen, Yalding parish council and our conservation grazing partner Round Oak Hebridean However, we also work on SSSIs on the North downs and low weald at myriad locations implementing natural flood management schemes, conducting wildlife surveys and protecting the landscape from invasive species.

Developing landscape-scale projects

We currently are running two major landscape scale conservation projects in our patch both funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The first of these, Save Our Magnificent Meadows has been running for more than three years, and is a truly national partnership under the guidance of Plantlife. There are 9 partners in every part of the British Isles. Our second major project, Past Plants Future Flora, seeks to explore and expand upon our unique niche in invasive species control, such as with giant hogweed, himalayan balsam and japanese knotweed, to name but three, across the Medway catchment and beyond.

Interpretation and education

This past year we have run more than 60 separate events for schools, the wider public and special interest groups. This comprehensive education programme at locations as divers as Lullingstone Country Park in the west to Oare gunpowder works in the east has seen more than 1000 people of all ages enjoy fun and educational days out in the glorious Kent countryside.

Encouraging access

We work alongside the KCC Public Rights of Way team to encourage access to the countryside. This has been seen most evidently in our work mitigating habitat loss alongside the now complete Maidstone to Aylesford combined cycle and footway, which is proving a very popular and healthy route between the two locations.

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