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Fox Corner Boardwalk Opened in Downpour Amid a Sea of Umbrellas

Published on: 30 Oct, 2023
Updated on: 31 Oct, 2023

A colourful spectacle of umbrellas was the order of the day on Saturday last week (October 21) as the heavens opened on the official opening of the new boardwalk and dipping platform at the Fox Corner Community Wildlife Area.

From left: site manager Nigel Emmerson, Steve Hull of S R H Landscape Services, the Chairman of the FCCWAA Catherine Cobley, Pirbright’s Borough and County Councillor Keith Witham, fundraiser Peter Morley.

The site is looked after by the Fox Corner Community Wildlife Area. Pirbright’s Borough and County Councillor Keith Witham cut the ribbon across the new boardwalk, declaring the new boardwalk and dipping platform open. 

Councillor Keith Witham cuts the ribbon and officially opens the new boardwalk.

A key part of the wildlife area, the original dipping platform and boardwalk, linking the pond to the brooks beyond the wetland area, were in urgent need of replacement, and a fundraising campaign was undertaken early in 2023.

The financial target was reached in the summer of 2023 and the work has now been completed. The materials used for the new dipping platform and boardwalk are recycled composite materials, which should last for many decades.

The chairman of the Fox Corner Community Wildlife Area Association, Catherine Cobley, said: “We want to thank all of our generous donors and supporters for their help in making this project possible.

“We also appreciate the grants received from the Pirbright Institute, Pirbright Parish Council, Surrey County Council’s Your Fund Surrey Small Community Projects Fund, and the National Lottery Community Fund.

“This combination of local support with the backing of institutional donors has made it possible for this project to go ahead.”

Catherine Cobley said the project cost £30k and was a daunting challenge. “We have been amazed by the generosity shown by residents and members of the local community,” she said.

“The management committee feels it has been a very heart-warming local affirmation of everything we aim to achieve as an association.

“The work was completed by Steve Hull of S R H Landscape Services, ably assisted by our site manager, Nigel Emmerson. Volunteers from Network Rail assisted by removing the old boardwalk.”

The new boardwalk.

The Fox Corner Community Wildlife Area is a charity run by a dedicated management committee working with other enthusiastic local volunteers.

It is a unique 14-acre nature reserve, providing a diverse environment for many different species, including a variety of native trees, hedgerows, flowers, birds, insects and mammals.

The boardwalk and dipping platform are integral to the site and they provide excellent opportunities to explore and educate, with pond dipping a regular activity.

The boardwalk project cost £30k.

In addition, the boardwalk links the pond and natural wetlands to the Stanford and Hodge Brooks and provides inviting and safe access to enable visitors to enjoy the pond area and from there, an interesting and beautiful circular walk, which links the eastern part of the site to the heathland beyond, via the brooks. 

For more information about the Fox Corner Community Wildlife Area, visit

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Responses to Fox Corner Boardwalk Opened in Downpour Amid a Sea of Umbrellas

  1. Jan Messinger Reply

    October 30, 2023 at 11:57 am

    Think article should read October 21 as we have not reached November 21 yet.

    Editor’s response thank you for pointing out our error. It will be corrected.

  2. Paul Robinson Reply

    October 31, 2023 at 6:00 pm

    I hope it will better maintained than the Riverside Park boardwalk that is now in a deplorable state with rotting & loose boards all over the place.

    • Peter George Morley Reply

      November 2, 2023 at 10:41 am

      Our old boardwalk at Fox Corner required a lot of maintenance so we have replaced it using low maintenance materials, carefully engineered and installed. Come and see it.

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