My name is Tom Simon and I am the new (well I’ve been here for about 2 months now) Countryside Worker for the Conservators fof Ashdown Forest.
To give a brief background of my journey to Ashdown, I have been pursuing a career in environmental conservation for a few years now. I left Plumpton College in 2008 with a foundation degree in Countryside Management and was then volunteering with the West Sussex County Council Low Weald Countryside Rangers and RSPB Pulborough Brook. My adventures have led me to volunteer and work respectively for the National Trust on the north Cornish coast and then the Farne Islands off the Northumberland Coast in 2009/2010. I spent most of 2012 up in Aberdeenshire doing an internship based at RSPB Loch of Strathbeg and last summer working for Horsham District Council at Southwater Country Park! Phew!
I will try to describe my journey of discovery into Ashdown Forest as best I can and also give an idea of the work I undertake and hopefully some photos of what we are doing which aren’t all arty photography attempts.
That being said, here’s a Silver Birch from Chelwood Vachery that possibly looks like an animal you’d find on the Forest.
I will also try to describe some of the highlights of working on the Forest, such as the other day when I was waiting for one of our bonfires to burn down next to the entrance to Crest Farm and in the golden sunlight a male Hen Harrier flew over!
I am very much looking forward to working at Ashdown Forest and now that’s the introductory blog out the way, I will attempt to keep these blog posts regular.