Wild cattle at Knepp Wildland
Since 2001, the 3,500-acre Knepp Estate in West Sussex has been devoted to a pioneering rewilding project. Challenging the UK's traditional approach to conservation, the vision of the Knepp Wildland Project is to establish a functioning ecosystem where nature is given as much freedom as possible and allowed to actively restore the land.
Once used for industrial agriculture, grazing animals are now the drivers of habitat creation. With the restoration of dynamic, natural water courses, the project has transformed into a biodiverse ecosystem that has seen extraordinary increases in wildlife, including many rare and endangered species.
Whilst supporting increasingly biodiverse habitats, this change in land management is also helping to mitigate climate change and create climate resilience. The soil now has an increased capacity to sequester carbon, to store flood waters, and to filter and purify chemical run-off from the neighbouring farmland allowing ecosystems downstream to thrive. In a region previously prone to floods, the positive impacts on the surrounding communities are already noticeable.
Aligning with our mission to create sustainable societies where people and nature flourish, Ramboll is proud to provide pro-bono support to projects such as Knepp Wildland Project as they leverage nature-based solutions and play a key role in the decarbonisation of our economies.
As part of our newly formed partnership with Knepp Estate, Ramboll’s ‘Making A Difference’ network is putting together a team of volunteers that will include ecologists, landscape architects, geotechnical engineers, bridge engineers, highways engineers and visualisation experts, to provide high-level technical advice on the design of a wildlife bridge.
The new bridge will connect fragmented habitats and allow a larger region of West Sussex to be 'rewilded' into a unique wildlife-rich area that the surrounding communities can enjoy.