The great rewilding experiment at Knepp Castle
From Nightingales to Turtle Doves, Violet Dor Beetles to Purple Emperors, there are surprises galore at the estate of Knepp Castle. The author visits the site to see this long-term rewilding experiment in action.
Twenty years ago, the 1,400-hectare (3,500-acre) Knepp Castle estate, a few miles south of Horsham, in West Sussex, was a conventional mixed farm. It fitted into the landscape of small fields, hedges and scattered woods that characterises the heavy clay of the Low Weald.