Tree Biology & Identification
About the event
In this beginners course we will spend the morning classroom session introducing the evolution and biology of trees in order to discover how these plants have been so successful at colonising the planet.
After lunch you will take a trip around our woodland nature reserve where you will have the opportunity to identify a variety of trees found across Surrey using numerous detection methods that do not require viewing the leaves.
Tutor Information- Paul Ritchie
As a chartered biologist with over 20 years of experience as a countryside manager looking after nature reserves and commons Paul is well placed to deliver training in ecology and practical conservation management. He has held roles training employees and volunteers for the Metropolitan Police, City of London and now Surrey Wildlife Trust.
Turning back the clock Paul started working on the land as a farm labourer on a mixed arable and livestock farm in the Chiltern Hills. He went on to study zoology at the University of Nottingham (studying ants in Edale, African carnivores and tapeworms!) whilst volunteering for organisations conserving canals and waterways.
As a police officer Paul undertook a variety of roles in Harringey, Highbury and Central London, which included training new recruits, community engagement and rescuing wildlife (a degree in zoology is invaluable for this!). During his spare time Paul helped out in the London Wildlife Trust education centre at Railway Fields.
After studying ecology and conservation at Birbeck College (University of London) Paul had a second 20-year career in parks, gardens and open spaces with City of London. He helped to establish the community woodland project at Ashtead Common NNR; trained and assessed apprentices; and worked closely with volunteer and community groups.
Paul now works closely with the Surrey Wildlife Trust to deliver a wide range of scientific and practical courses in his capacity as a tutor with Sorbus Learning.
Pricemembers £35, non-members £47
Know before you go
What to bring
Please bring a packed lunch and wear sturdy walking boots. All weather outdoor clothing is also advisable.