Planting projects

Old Ratton

This exciting project will see the planting of 2,000 trees, comprising of 14 different species that are native to the UK, including disease resistant Elms.  Part of the South Downs National Park and located behind Old Ratton Estate, we have been given the opportunity to renew an area which has lost a significant number of Ash trees, caused by Ash dieback (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus). This is the most devastating tree disease since dutch elm disease killed 60 million elm trees in the UK during two epidemics in the 1920s and 1970s.





Native species


Site area

2.5 hectares

A clear-fell was carried out in 2021 under a special exemption due to the high level of danger of trees in cose proximity to houses and potentially to walkers using the Jubilee Way which runs through its centre.

Whilst it’s sad to see the effects of ash-die back, the removal of the dead and falling ash trees is a great opportunity to restore a range of more diverse wooded and open habitats to a part of the escarpment landscape.

We will be planting a greater diversity of native tree species, grouped together in small ‘copses’, whilst also leaving glades amongst them. Butterflies, bees and other insects will thrive in these sunnier open areas, and birds and other wildlife will be encouraged by shrubby areas along with taller trees, all producing a range of flowers, berries and seeds.

Our planting of the trees, whilst planned to maintain some open areas, will be more ‘natural’ with more random spacing than we might do in the town parks, to reflect the wilder feel of this site.

Supported by:

Eastbourne  Council South Downs national Parl trust


We are planting 14 native species, including disease resistant Elms.

  • Elm - Ulmus minor Ademu
  • Elm - Ulmus New Horizon
  • Elm - Ulmus Fiorente
  • Beech - Fagus sylvatica
  • Hornbeam - Carpinus betulus
  • Whitebeam -Sorbus aria
  • Wild Cherry - Prunus avium
  • Field Maple - Acer campestre
  • Small - Leaved Lime - Tilia cordata
  • Yew - Taxus baccata
  • Hazel - Corylus avellana
  • Hawthorn - Craetaegus mono
  • Blackthorn - Prunus spinosa
  • Spindle - Euonymus europaeu

Contact us

As local residents, your input into this project, and support for it, are critical to us. This is your opportunity to review and feed back on our work. We promise to do our best to respond to every suggestion, and wherever practical, to accommodate them into our plans.

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