Hampton Estate offers free activities on Sunday 21st July

Hampton Estate view

On Sunday, 21st July, Hampton Estate in Puttehham, Surrey is inviting the local community to join wildlife experts including Surrey Wildlife Trust to take part in a 'bioblitz' to help identify as many plant and animal species as possible across Puttenham Common which is a scenic spot for couples looking to book a pre-wedding engagement shoot. One of Surrey's most beautiful and biodiverse habitats, the common is located between Farnham and Guildford and is run by the Hampton Estate, which has a 100-year plan to manage the site for nature and wants as many people as possible to help learn about and conserve local species.
 

As well as inviting people to seek out and record creatures great and small with the aid of nets, magnifying glasses and binoculars, the day will include wildlife walks led by experts and offers people of all ages the chance to learn all about the awesome birds, butterflies, insects, plants, reptiles and conservation grazing cows that call Puttenham Common their home. A range of local conservation organisations will be joining in and offering local people the chance to learn fascinating details about the nature on their doorsteps. They include Surrey Wildlife Trust, Surrey Bird Club, Surrey Bat Club, West Weald Fungus Group, Surrey Botanical Society, and Surrey Moth Group, and Heathland Connections.

Puttenham Common is a 180-hectare mosaic of habitats including lowland heathland, dry acid grassland, boggy mires, lowland mixed deciduous woodland and wood pasture. Hampton Estate has kept the site open for public enjoyment since 1968, and its 100-year vision for the restoration of its precious habitats places special emphasis on creating additional lowland heathland and wood pasture. Wildlife and flora that depend on a healthy, connected mosaic of lowland heathland includes Nightjars, Woodlarks, Nightingales, Silver Studded Blue and Small Heath butterflies, Sand lizards, Serotine Bats, Smooth Cat's-ear, Shepherd's Cress, Bog Pimpernel and Bottle Sedge.

Hampton Estate's nature-based solutions manager Molly Biddell says: "Whether you are a dedicated wildlife geek, have a passing interest in local landscapes or are simply wanting to enjoy time out in nature with your kids, you can have a great time on our bioblitz. Most importantly, by joining in with our survey you'll be helping us formulate a really effective plan to conserve Puttenham Common for wildlife and people to enjoy for decades - and hopefully centuries - to come".

Surrey Wildlife Trust's Space4Nature project manager Andrew Jamieson says: "People will only protect what they care about, and this is a wonderful opportunity for people from toddlers to grandparents to nurture a great relationship with the natural world. With lowland heathland now globally rarer than rainforest, the Hampton Estate team is right to put the restoration of this habitat at the top of its to-do list. It's great that they have chosen to involve local people in helping get a better and more in-depth understanding of what lives there."

The event is free of charge and runs from 10 am until 3 pm. Ample parking is available at Top Car Park, Puttenham Common, Suffield Lane, Surrey GU3 1BG. To book onto a wildlife walk visit https://www.hamptonestate.co.uk/events

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