Hello to a new Site Manager for the South East!
Early November 2021 saw a new face join the Trust in the form of Nick Reed-Beale, who is now covering South Oxfordshire and parts of Surrey in his role as Site Manager in the South East region. Here we find a bit more about his interesting experience to date and say a warm welcome!
Nick says: ‘”I have been in and around the conservation sector since I was 17! It all started with the newts in the pond in our garden in North London! My passion for wildlife and the natural world rapidly progressed to see me join a four month biodiversity research expedition to Tanzania when I was 17 (my mum must have been mad to let me go)!
I graduated with a degree in wildlife conservation, and the following years up until I was 30 were spent living and working in remote tropical forests of Central and South America and Africa (a truly different world and a time of my life I look back on fondly). I was working as part of the expedition staff team or leader on a number of expeditions, aimed at raising the profile of these biodiversity hotspots to garner better government protections. We were successful – at times!
I took a nine year break from conservation to join the military and security services (again, a time I look back on with pride), which had always been another aspirational goal from a young age. The experience I gained here let me then develop a role and team with another conservation charity – I established a global programme of wildlife law enforcement best practice and anti-poaching strategy and tactics for government and NGO wildlife units.
My daughter being born in 2015 changed my attitude to risk and I made a gradual return to the UK conservation sector, where I worked as an area manager for Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, before joining the Woodland Trust.
My role with the Woodland Trust is as Woodland Site Manager for Surrey and South Oxfordshire. Working in woodland with a focus on conservation has, as can be seen, been a driving passion in my life, so I consider myself lucky to be in the role! Being able to spend time in these woods, ensuring we are working to allow these sites to thrive for conservation and access purposes is both rewarding and challenging!
Further developing my knowledge of woodland ecosystems (the learning never ends) is the element of my work that ensures I am always being attentive to the fauna and flora around me. Of particular interest is ancient woodland and its preservation as a critical habitat for wildlife.”
Thank you, Nick. for this fantastic introduction and we are sure that you will make a great contribution to the regional team!
Words: Nick Reed-Beale (Site Manager, SE) and Anna Claxton, Volunteer Development Officer, SE)
Pic: Nick Reed-Beale