Leatherhead's Wildlife Aid needs land
A wildlife charity has appealed to landowners in Surrey to consider donating 10 acres of their land for a new environmental centre.
Wildlife Aid, which has run a veterinary hospital and wildlife rehabilitation centre on the outskirts of Leatherhead for the past 28 years, now needs to relocate to a larger site so it can sustain and expand its vital environmental work.
After almost three decades caring for wildlife, the charity's founder Simon Cowell MBE said he believed Wildlife Aid is now uniquely placed to champion the cause of environmental responsibility.
He said: "In all the years that we've been providing care for wildlife, we've learned first-hand how animal welfare, conservation and habitat protection are all closely inter-linked.
"Wildlife Aid has a vital role to play in educating the public, especially the younger generation, about care for the natural environment.
"We already partner with some local schools on environmental projects, but there is so much more that we can do. We cannot, however, do all this on our present three acre site."
He said that as the only remaining wildlife hospital in Surrey, Wildlife Aid was now severely over-stretched, so in the new year it planned to relocate to a new site in the heart of the Surrey countryside, and create a new wildlife centre with educational facilities.
This would enable the charity to continue its wildlife rehabilitation work and incorporate an educational role into its service.
But first it needs to find the land.
Mr Cowell said: "I know there are sites around the county that would be perfect for us. But we need a landowner who shares our vision."
The site must have good road access, but be in a rural or semi-rural location.
The charity is committed to ensuring that any new development has a light environmental footprint - buildings would be low-lying and designed to be sustainable, energy efficient and carbon-neutral.
Mr Cowell said he hoped that the appeal for land would lead to a positive response from Surrey's landowners.
"There must be someone out there who's willing to make a New Year's resolution to help the environment by providing Wildlife Aid with our new site," he said.
If you think you can help, call Mr Cowell on 07836 635269 or Andy Smith on 07737 271676, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.