The historic parkland of Greenwich Park, with stunning views across the Thames estuary, is also the setting for an array of veteran trees. We will survey their ecology and importance as a habitat. Other activities will include assessment of veteran trees for their wildlife value, mapping the location of our surveyed trees and collating the gathered data. Course fee includes FSC fold out chart: The Tree Name Trail.

In the morning we will look at the ecological landscape history of Greenwich Park, within its geographical setting, its early development as a Park and on through to its use and value to us today. We will then discuss the assessment of Veteran Trees for their wildlife value, before going outside and trying out our skills. During the afternoon we will go out into the Park again to assess more of the Veteran trees. Back in the classroom for our last session, we will collate the data from our different groups, creating a chart of our findings and mapping the location of our surveyed trees.

Tutor: Sharon Brown

Sharon Brown is a botanist – geographer currently working as an independent ecologist with habitat assessment and management as a main area of expertise. Over time she has also worked for the Nature Conservancy Council, Scottish Rangering, Wildlife Trusts and latterly as an associate tutor for the FSC. As a naturalist she has a fascination for wild places, as well as the wild in more urban settings and an enthusiasm for passing this to others through practical application.

Example Timetable

09.30 Registration
10.00 Welcome, health and safety and introduction
10.15 Introduction to Greenwich Park from the viewpoint of historical ecology
10.45 Introduction to veteran tree survey
11.00 Break
11.15 Continuing intro. to Veteran Tree Survey
11.45 Practical tree survey, session 1
13.00 Lunch
13.30 Practical tree survey, session 2, and walk to view the Park in its ecological setting
15.15 Collating tree survey data and resumé of day
15.50 Taking your interest further and course reviews
16.00 Course finishes

All timings are approximate. This is an outline programme and may be subject to change according to the weather, requirements of the group or access restrictions to field sites on the day of the course. Our courses include some classroom sessions but field visits may be a few hours long and involve walking over uneven ground.

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition
  • Hot and Cold Drinks

Before You Attend

What to Bring

  • Sensible clothing for the weather
  • Appropriate footwear
  • Lunch and Drinks (refreshments are provided)


  • Binoculars