The Wilderness Foundation UK’s primary site in Britain is located just an hour outside London on the A131 in the village of Chatham Green. This 400-acre property hosts:
- The Chatham Green Project: curriculum-based education for primary and secondary school groups
- Corporate training programmes that build leadership and teamwork skills
- Out There Wilderness Academy for youth ages 13–15 who struggle with conventional schooling
- One-to-one youth services and wilderness therapy for young people or adults
- Monthly meetings of the Wild Swans leadership programme for young women and of TurnAround programme participants
- Strutt & Parker (Farms), a sustainable, environmentally conscious farm that produces wheat for 80% of all the bread in the UK
- Our organisation headquarters
Our partnership with Strutt & Parker (Farms) enables us to preserve and “re-wild” non-farm spaces. The natural habitats include woodlands, a wildflower meadow, and a newly created woodland pond. Other features include hedgerows, watercourses, and field margins that act as wildlife corridors by connecting habitat areas.
Taken together, the sustainable farmland and wild spaces help to provide a “green lung” for communities under pressure from urban expansion. They also give urban youth (and adults) the opportunity to learn, explore, and work in fresh, clean air surrounded by growing things.
The outdoors is our primary teaching and learning space. Indoor spaces complement nature’s classroom. Primary among these is our purpose-built education centre. Designed to fit in with the local farm buildings, the education centre features:
- An open and inviting classroom space
- Full audiovisual capabilities and wireless Internet access
- Coat racks, boot store and Accessible bathroom facilities
- A generous outdoor terrace with seats and benches for a casual lunch meeting or school picnic
Other learning spaces include:
- A safari tent, complete with a wood-burning stove, that can accommodate small groups for crafts or discussions year-round
- Bush craft area and fire pit, where Out There students often engage in their alternative education programmes with their adult mentors
The education centre is fully accessible to people with disabilities, as are most outdoor spaces. However, weather can affect some areas’ accessibility. Call us on 0300 123 3073 to discuss your group’s needs.
Local Food Programme
The Chatham Green Project also has a satellite local food programme delivered in the heart of the Melbourne Park Estate in the centre of the City of Chelmsford. Disadvantaged individuals and families engage in an educational social programme in which they grow organic fruit and vegetables to donate to people in need. The CGP Local Food Programme is sponsored by the Big Lottery Fund Awards for All scheme and is also supported by Persimmon Homes and the Salvation Army.