Research and Development

Image courtesy of Jayshree Patel

Horsenden has seen much innovation and development over the last few years. Creating new woodlands and orchards, deploying a working horse to assist with woodland and meadow management, managing and caring for livestock that help with conservation grazing – clearing overgrown spaces that can be reclaimed and replanted; developing hedgelines using native hedge species; exploring techniques such as Silvopasture and regenerative farming among them.

The list goes on and will continue to grow as we seek to keep Horsenden as sustainable and as biodiverse as possible. Ranger Jon Staples spearheads and leads new initiatives and while the results are there for all to enjoy, behind the scenes a lot of work goes into making them happen. This section of our website takes a look into the research and planning that goes into new developments.

All new developments have long lasting consequences. A new woodland for instance will be there for generations to enjoy. But is it in the right place? Did we select the right species? How will neighbouring planting be affected? A hundred questions must be addressed before any decision is made.

Decisions that impact the landscape and balance of nature involve a lot of research; information gathering, spending time learning with experts, attending courses and recruiting volunteers who have the passion and the commitment to support them. Fortunately at Horsenden we have a dedicated team of volunteers and ranger Jon Staples undertakes much learning and research as his voluntary commitment, often spending his annual leave visiting farms and smallholdings across the land.

This section of our website will expand as new initiatives get underway. Like a new woodland it won’t happen overnight but we hope it’s worth the wait. In the meantime, follow the Friends on Instagram and Facebook. to be among the first to know about new plans for Horsenden.