Blindley Heath pond improvements create an environmental haven - 02/08/2010

Sutton and East Surrey Water -

The ponds are now looking somewhat different, as the attached ‘before’ and ‘after’ pictures show.

Ponds restored during trunk main re-routing by Sutton and East Surrey Water at Blindley Heath are now providing a much-improved environment for local residents – both human and wildlife alike.

The area surrounding the two natural ponds, within the protected Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) on the western side of Tandridge Lane, has been transformed into an attractive local amenity for walkers and wildlife enthusiasts.

Carried out last winter, the restoration work, overseen by Blindley Heath Management Committee and partly funded by Sutton and East Surrey Water and Geronimo Inns, involved clearing undergrowth and cutting back overgrown trees and reeds, then reprofiling the ponds to improve water and wetland conditions for wildlife. 

Following spring and summer growth, the area is now an environmental haven resplendent with natural beauty. (As the attached  ‘before’ and ‘after’ pictures show).

Sutton and East Surrey Water project engineer, Fiona Martin, explained that the opportunity to refurbish the largest pond came to the company’s notice as a new £2 million trunk main was being laid through nearby fields bordering Blindley Heath, either side of the A22. 

“We were very happy to assist with a donation to the cost of restoring the large pond, opposite the Red Barn pub, as an acknowledge of the positive involvement of residents, landowners, local councillors and the local authorities towards the success of the rerouting project.  Without their patience, understanding and co-operation I doubt we would have completed this essential project six months ahead of schedule.”

Geronimo Inns, owners of The Red Barn, helped fund work on a smaller pond near the country pub restaurant.

“I visited the sites recently and was impressed by the difference the work has made to the ponds. I'm sure the overall area will now continue to improve throughout the coming year, providing valuable habitats for local wildlife,” added Fiona Martin.

Sutton and East Surrey Water is continuing to work closely with Godstone Parish Council to complete final sections of reinstatement, delayed in the spring by extremely wet ground conditions.

Chris Anderson, Clerk to Godstone Parish Council, which owns the SSSI area, commented:  “I would like to thank Sutton and East Surrey Water and Geronimo Inns for their generous donations, without which we would have been unable to fund the full restoration project of both ponds. Carrying out the work in a single operation has produced a much more co-ordinated result and a better overall environment for all to enjoy.”

Members of the Blindley Heath Management Committee also worked on the pond restoration in conjunction with Natural England and Tandridge District Council.

For more information contact:
Liz Thorne or John Burbedge on 01372 460111

NOTES TO EDITORS
Sutton and East Surrey Water supplies water to more than 650,000 people in east Surrey, and parts of West Sussex, west Kent and south London. Our supply area is 322 square miles (834 sq km) extending from Morden and South Croydon in the north to Gatwick Airport in the south and from Cobham, Leatherhead and Dorking in the west to Edenbridge and Bough Beech in the east. Groundwater supplies provide 85 per cent of our water, with 15 per cent being extracted from one reservoir at Bough Beech.   
 

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