Monitoring the River Tillingbourne – update

The Tillingbourne has been monitored by volunteers since the Spring of 2016 and volunteers are now active in every village along the length of the river. River invertebrate samples are also reguarly collected by volunteers at Shalford, Chilworth, Albury, and Gomshall.
Surveys appear to suggest that sediment pollution getting into the river from the surrounding land is one of the main issues affecting the Tillingbourne. Too much sediment can smother river bed habitats reducing both invertebrate populations and fish spawning areas so combatting this issue is at the top of the agenda.
The Tillingbourne is an important wildlife corridor across Surrey and will become a focus area for Surrey Wildlife Trust over the coming years. We will be looking at expanding our current volunteer project by training more river monitors and holding more practical river restoration task days in those areas of the river most in need of a bit of help. The graph below shows the Riverfly scores for 2017.

Glen Skelton – Wetland Landscapes Officer
Surrey Wildlife Trust


Local information – contacts at Surrey Wildlife Trust

This information has been passed to us by a Wildlife Trust volunteer, M. Williams.

See also Surrey Wildlife Trust website for all details of personnel and their activities – click here to go to their website –
Surrey Wildlife Trust

Following the Surrey Wildlife Trust reorganisation in 2017, the following contacts may be useful to people in Chilworth
– Enquiries about River Search still go to Glen Skelton.
– Our liaison person is John Wiltshire, he handles queries about trees etc. I met John about 12 years ago when I was working for Surrey Wildlife Trust and he was a volunteer in the Guildford area, he is very well respected by everybody.
– The best contact if you want to purchase a study, e.g. into bats, dormice, snakes etc is Jamel. Many of us know Jamel from his sterling work on really difficult reserves such as Thundry Meadows and Vann Lake, his regular informative walks and his management of volunteer work groups. Also many people know him through the Surrey Reptile and Amphibian Group (SARG). I am delighted that he has been promoted to the role of Environmental Consultant for SWT.
– Our local Ranger, Leo, is sorely missed by those of us who visit Chinthurst Hill, especially those who enjoyed watching the pigs do practical and innovative conservation work. Leo left for a management role in Natural England. I visited one of his reserves last week, it is sad that there are so few within a 20 minute drive of us. I am sure that you will join me in wishing him continued success.
Finally the SWT “What’s On” guide is available both on-line and in the traditional paper format.

M. Williams
Surrey Wildlife Trust volunteer”

Look how rewarding our working parties are!


Here we are in action in the Gunpowder Works, coppicing straggly hazel and encouraging new growth.

We meet at the weekends several times a year and spend a good morning in the fresh air, doing something really useful and helping to preserve our heritage site as a peaceful place for a quiet walk, and a haven for wildlife, including dormice.

Do feel free to join us at our next working party. Come for as long, or as short a time as you can spare – you will be welcome. Meet at the picnic area at the bottom of Vera’s path.

Countryside Wardens Nick and Alison work with the group, provide tools and even a drink. They check on safety and ensure everything we do contributes to the Management Plan for this historic site.

Gunpowder Mills map and historic information to download

Chilworth Gunpowder Mills Is a scheduled ancient monument. Enhance your visit to the Gunpowder Mills in their magic woodland set by downloading the following information and guided trail. See also a set of images showing the historic remains, shown under Gunpowder Mills Picture Gallery.

Thanks to Andrew Norris, Chilworth Gunpowder Group for the images, and to Glenys Crocker for permission to download the map.
walk leaflet 2010 rev2b page 1
walk leaflet 2010 rev2b page 2