Nature conservation is about managing countryside sites for the benefit of all wildlife.

We have a network of different habitats valuable to wildlife across the district.

Such as:

  • Woodlands
  • Hedgerows
  • Meadows
  • Ponds
  • Streams
  • Rivers
  • Parks and gardens

Countryside Rangers

All conservation areas are patrolled by the rangers.

The Rangers are here to help you. They wear uniforms and carry official ID.

On conservation sites they:

  • Work with the local community and conservation groups
  • Promote and encourage proper use of facilities
  • Manage healthy walks across Mid Sussex
  • Deal with dog control issues, vandalism and some antisocial behaviour
  • Inspect sites and facilities to keep them up to shape
  • Carry out risk assessments 
  • Give help and advice
  • Investigate incidents and accidents

Nature Conservation Sites

Nature Conservation sites in Mid Sussex

East Grinstead

Ashplats Wood
Please take a look at our East Court & Ashplats wood page for more information.

Farm Close Meadows, Farm Close
A sloping site with grassland meadows, scrub and a pond. It also features a public footpath which offers good links to the countryside.

Herons Ghyll, Herontye Drive
A small sloping site with woodland and five ponds.


Eastern Road Local Nature Reserve, Eastern Road
Woodland, scrub rough grassland with mature trees and a pond.

Haywards Heath

Scrase Valley Local Nature Reserve - between Lindfield and Haywards Heath
A stream, woodland and rare wet meadow.

Blunts Wood and Paiges Meadows Local Nature Reserve, Blunts Wood Road.
Deciduous woodland, meadows, ancient hedges and wetlands.

Ashenground and Bolnore Woods Local Nature Reserve - west of the railway line, Bolnore.
Pockets of woodland including Catts Wood to the west of the village. For more information please visit the Friends of Ashenground and Bolnore Woods website.

Burgess Hill

Burgess Hill has a network of conservation sites around the town known as Burgess Hill Green Circle. For more information please visit the Friends of Burgess Hill Green Circle or Burgess Hill Town Council websites.

Bedelands Farm Local Nature Reserve, Maple Drive - next to the playing fields at Leylands Park.
Woodland, scrub, grassland meadows, hedges and ponds. It is a Site of Nature Conservation Importance (SNCI). Valebridge Meadow was designated a Coronation Meadow in 2013.

Green Crescent - a continuous arc to the west and south of Jane Murray Way
Linked by public footpaths and bridleways with links to wider countryside.


From Pangdean Lane meadows in the north
Through Malthouse Lane Meadows
And down to Hammonds Ridge and Nightingale Lane meadows to the south

Along the way you’ll see mature specimen trees in meadows, newly planted woodland, hedgerows and ponds.

High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

What is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)?

It is an outstanding landscape whose distinctive character and natural beauty are so precious that it is safeguarded in the national interest. The primary purpose of AONB designation is to conserve and enhance natural beauty. For more information on AONBs, please visit the visit the Landscapes for life website.

The High Weald AONB

It is a medieval landscape of woodland, rolling hills, sandstone outcrops, scattered farmsteads and ancient routeways. The High Weald stretches across the counties of Kent, Sussex and Surrey and covers around half of Mid Sussex.

Management of the High Weald AONB

Local authorities with land in an AONB legally have to prepare and publish a plan that sets out the policy for managing the protected landscape. The District Council has regard to the Management Plan when considering development proposals in the High Weald AONB and when delivering other Council services.

Landscape and biodiversity

We look at the landscape and biodiversity of Mid Sussex District at a strategic level. This way we can better understand the value of our local environment and help to enhance and protect it.


A Landscape Character Assessment for Mid Sussex

The Landscape Character Assessment was produced to help protect and enhance the distinctive landscape character of the District, and to manage change and inform other strategic documents

Part Three: Landscape Character Areas

Part Four: Landscape Management Guidelines




Ancient woodland

These are areas where there has been continuous woodland since at least 1600 AD.

Mid Sussex District is the tenth most wooded district in the South East. Nearly two thirds of our woodland is classified as ancient.  Many of the woodlands in the area have a complex history and traces of past uses and management can still be seen today.

A revision of the Ancient Woodland Inventory for Mid Sussex was completed in October 2006.

The revised survey found an additional 607 ancient woodlands not previously identified. This added 1600 Hectares to the total of ancient woodlands known to exist in Mid Sussex. 

2006 - A revision of the ancient woodland inventory for Mid Sussex District Council

Contact us

Countryside Rangers

Tel: 01444-477579

Last updated: 21 August 2023