27 Mar, 2018
Come and hear from Isabella Tree, author of Wilding, a book about the re-wilding of land on the Knepp Estate, which Pan Macmillan publishes in May 2018.
Forced to accept that intensive farming on their heavy clay soils at Knepp in West Sussex was driving them into the ground, Isabella Tree and her husband Charlie Burrell took a spectacular leap of faith in 2000 and handed their 3,500 acres back to nature. With minimal human intervention, using herds of free-roaming animals to create dynamism and new habitats, their rewilded land is now heaving with life. Rare species like turtle doves, nightingales, peregrine falcons and purple emperor butterflies are now breeding at Knepp and biodiversity has rocketed.
The project has become a leading light for conservation in the UK, demonstrating how a hands-off approach – letting nature take the driving seat - can restore land and wildlife in a dramatically short space of time, reversing the cataclysmic declines that have affected most species in Britain over the past five decades. The story of rewilding Knepp challenges conventional ideas about our past and present landscape, and points the way to a wilder, richer future – a countryside that benefits farming, nature and us.
Part gripping memoir, part fascinating account of Britain’s rural ecology, Wilding is, above all, an inspiring story of hope.