Turning the tide for wildlife

, 22 April 2024
Turning the tide for wildlife
Pine Marten © Mark Hamblin/2020VISION

By Chris Corrigan

Chief Executive Officer

Sussex is a special county with an unparalleled variety of dramatic landscapes and important habitats. Our coastline and seas, chalk downland, river valleys, ancient woodlands and lowland heathlands support a remarkable range of wildlife throughout the year.

Since our foundation in 1961, Sussex Wildlife Trust has focused on protecting these areas rich in natural life. For more than 60 years, our staff and volunteers have worked alongside local communities to support wildlife and create more places where nature can thrive. However, despite our collective best efforts, we have only managed to slow rather than stop the ongoing loss of nature, as we face the growing pressures of habitat loss, pollution, and the increasing impacts of the climate crisis.

Tompot Blenny under Brighton Pier © Paul Naylor
Tompot Blenny under Brighton Pier © Paul Naylor

We are in a critical decade for change to restore nature and address climate change. Now is the time for an ambitious action plan to match the scale and urgency of the challenges we are facing.

Our new strategy, Our Wild Sussex, sets out our vision and commitment to turning the tide for wildlife. By 2030, nature in Sussex will be in recovery. At least 30% of land and sea will be protected and well managed for wildlife as we broaden our impact beyond the boundaries of our nature reserves to deliver innovative wildlife projects which allow nature to thrive.

People are the key to nature’s recovery and a crucial element of this Strategy. We cannot restore nature and address climate change unless more people of all ages, identities, cultures, backgrounds and abilities take action.

With more people taking action and supporting our ambitious plans, we will reach an important tipping point where the decline of wildlife in Sussex will swing into recovery.

Our success will depend on all sectors of our Sussex community working together to deliver Our Wild Sussex. There is no better gift we can give to our natural world and future generations.

Download Our Wild Sussex strategy

Wildlife Rangers © Sam Roberts
Wildlife Rangers © Sam Roberts
Leave a comment


  • Claire Majsai:

    I live in Hurstpierpoint and Sayers Common Parish. It’s so depressing to those of us trying to work to support nature recovery to see our area again not recognised as important for nature. In your map it is literally greyed out. We are facing a huge amount of development if the MSDC Local Plan is enacted – it feels like we, but more importantly the flora and fauna around us, are being abandoned to become concreted over.

    24 Apr 2024 15:28:00

  • Sussex Wildlife Trust:

    There are many areas of Sussex Wildlife Trust work that operate in all areas of Sussex and our conservation team’s efforts are one of those. Where they are able to they are responding to local plans and follow the process through to examination in public if necessary. Also working with decision-makers is a key part of our strategy going forward and that would include councillors for Mid Sussex.

    The purpose of the Priority area map is to guide where we proactively seek opportunities. If we don’t give ourselves some focus we run the risk of spreading our resources too thinly across the county and in doing so reducing our actual impact for wildlife.