are fortunate to live and work in this
special place and are committed to offering
educational visits to the estate.
a look at different seasons at Knepp
of the groups
that have visited so far
College, local County Councillors, Cranleigh
& South Eastern Agricultural Society,
Beeding & Bramber Local History Society,
Shipley farmers, The Country Landowners
Association, Southwater Junior School, The
Royal Forestry Society, Savills' Resident
Land Agents, Worcestershire Wildlife Trust, The Horsham Natural History
Society, Sussex Resident Land Agents,
& Windlesham Schools, LEAF, the Woodland
Trust, Horsham Food Fayre, the Environment
Agency, the Historic Houses
Association, the Wildland Network, Shipley
& Dial Post residents, The Society for the Protection of
Ancient Buildings (SPAB), Natural England's
science & evidence team for the lowlands
& woodlands, The Countryside Access
Forum for West Sussex (CAFWS), The High
Weald AONB Unit, National Trust Conservation
Advisers, Gatwick Greenspaces, Sussex
Wildlife Trust, a group of Swiss
landscape architects, Shoreham District
Ornithological Society, Shipley Cubs, The
Country Trust with Marshlands Primary
School, CIWEM, Sompting Abbotts School,
Friends of Hollinbury & Burstead Woods,
Ferring Conservation Group, Davison High
School & Soth Downs Rangers.
2009 360 people visited in 19 groups and in
2010 we had a record 700 visitors in 38
your school, group or organisation would
like to visit Knepp to look at some of the
ongoing conservation projects on the estate,
please contact Jason or Julie at the estate office.
visits last from 2 - 4 hours. Our
original format was a "walk in the
park", but during 2007 we had a bespoke
personnel carrying trailer built, so now we
can offer visitors a trailer ride covering a
larger area. Some school
visits take on a different format - we have
had some that last for two days and include
estate has been the subject of various
research studies and university
dissertations over the years and we
endeavour to accommodate these wherever
of the areas that may interest groups of
visitors are described below. These
may be particularly relevant to school
an information pack contact
the estate office.
- Our countryside has been shaped by the
consequences of centuries of human activity.
When examined carefully all English
landscapes reveal evidence of this process.
More rarely there are areas where important
historic features remain visibly intact,
offering glimpses of the way in which
previous generations managed the land and
how it appeared to them.
areas are particularly valuable both as a
historic record and because they contribute
to the diversity of our countryside,
reinforcing the distinctiveness of their
locality. The age and undisturbed nature of
such areas frequently makes them valuable
which may be included under this category
include historic parklands such as Knepp,
containing evidence of parkland design such
as avenues or groups of trees, historic deer
parks and wood pastures, ancient field
systems and grasslands, areas of ridge and
furrow, historic water meadows, historic
earthworks such as moats, ponds, green lanes
and ancient settlements, and of course
scheduled ancient monuments.
- Investigate the period in which the
feature was at the height of its activity
and identify how people would have lived in
those times e.g. what clothes would they
wear, food they would eat, how would they
travel, which other local places or
landscape features would have been in
- Relate aerial photographs to ground level
views and maps. Identify how activities have
changed the local landscape.
why that area was chosen for that particular
feature. For example was it a vantage point
or a vista, was there a good water supply or
transport route nearby?
- Use the visit as a basis for role play,
enacting out the life of the times.
Write "on the spot" accounts of
important events or daily life of the times.
- Investigate the plants and animals living
in the area now and compare them with might
have been living in that area in earlier
for evidence of undisturbed planting such as
hedgerows, meadows or copses and compare the
number and type of plants and animals
present with those found in more recent
- Investigate what art forms would have
been popular at that time. For example,
Anglo-Saxon artists used elaborate and
colourful patterns to decorate different
things including weapons and manuscripts.
Create your own patterns reflecting the
important features of the time such as local
animals and plants.
- Create 3D models to show how the
landscape has changed over time and use this
as a display to explain to other groups the
value of the site.
best time to visit Knepp
Deer. (May – October)
May, the fallow deer bucks (males) lose
their antlers and change their dark winter
coats to summer. This can mean that they are
not looking their best. By the end of June,
antlers have formed and young fawns have
started to appear. They are in their prime
in September. The end of September sees the
bucks competing in the rut. A strange
“bugling” can be heard from them. Fights
breakout between rival males.
Flowers. (June – July)
of the park has been sown with a wild flower
seed mix. Species such as knapweed,
birdsfoot trefoil and oxeye daisies are
established and are at their best at the end
of June. There is also an area of devils-bit
scabious, together with other species such
as common agrimony, eyebright, and speedwell
down by the lake edge that flower in August.
Mill Pond forms one of the most interesting
focus points of the study area, and is one
of the largest artificial bodies of water in
the region. It is now much smaller than its
original size, as almost half of the former
pond at the northern end has silted up and
progressed to reed bed and alder/willow carr.
The south-eastern arm is also substantially
silted and has reverted to reed bed and carr.
the main area of lake, the average depth of
water over the silt is thought to be around
750mm (3’) although over large areas it is
only a fraction of this. The depth of silt
has now been measured and is in places 2m
deep. Despite the extent of siltation and
reversion to reed bed and carr, the area of
open water is still very substantial indeed,
extending to approximately 28 acres.
margins of the lake are particularly well
developed with a wide swathe of emergent
vegetation dominated by reed mace, with some
areas of bull rush. There are also several
areas of woodland associated with the lake
edge, as well as a range of habitats in the
silted areas ranging from reed beds and
marsh to alder and willow carr. Water lilies
occur at the southern end.
lake is particularly important as a habitat
for birds and other wildlife including
dragonflies and amphibians.
an information pack contact
the Estate Office or read further in an
written for the CLA.