Volunteers from Milestone Infrastructure and Surrey County Council recently teamed up to undertake some much-needed conservation work at Horsell Common, near Woking in Surrey.

The team worked hard to clear Scots Pine tree saplings from the heathland, which is crucial to conserving the habitat of rare ground nesting birds, such as the Nightjar, Woodlark and Dartford Warbler, as well as a range of other species. By clearing the space, the team helped to support the breeding populations of the birds, which are rapidly decreasing in the South-East of England. Tree management is a key part of protecting the common and its winged residents; if the trees dominate the open landscape they will eventually take over. This would result in the creation of a dense woodland, leading to the loss of plants and animals which can only live on a heathland.

Rupert Millican, Senior Ranger at Horsell Common, said: “The team from Surrey County Council and Milestone Infrastructure managed to clear a large section of Scots Pine tree saplings from deep within the heath on Horsell Common. This essential work will maintain the open heathland habitat, benefitting the rare wildlife it supports. As part of the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area, Horsell Common is highly-protected because of its wildlife – this clearance work will help it retain this status, ensuring it remains available for future generations to enjoy.” 

Milestone Infrastructure is committed to working with its clients to support the communities we serve, as well as ensuring that we operate as sustainably as possible. The work of our team and their colleagues at Surrey County Council in supporting the conservation of Horsell Common is an outstanding example of our drive to work with our partners to support those impacted by our works. As well as enabling local residents to continue enjoying an outstanding area of nature, the work of the team has facilitated the preservation of endangered species of wildlife, supporting the sustainability of our natural environment. 

Well done to everyone involved!