The Groundwork London grants team often have the task (and privilege) of supporting some incredibly unique and impactful projects across London, with funds being awarded to projects helping communities and green spaces to thrive across the capital. One such event occurred earlier this month with a very unique beaver release!

On October 11th, Groundwork London’s grants team joined the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, alongside project partners Ealing Wildlife Group, Citizen Zoo, Ealing Council and Friends of Horsenden Hill to witness a family of 5 beavers being released back into west London for the first time in 400 years.


The recent ‘State of Nature’ report classified the UK as one of the world’s most nature-depleted countries. By reintroducing beavers, or ‘nature’s architects’, the project aims to transform the area into a flourishing wetland. London’s new neighbours will help combat the impact of the climate crisis and create an improved ecosystem for plant and animal life in the area.

The site is temporarily closed for one month after the beaver release to allow them time to settle. After this time, members of the public can visit the site with staff and supervision. After this, full public access will resume offering a ground-breaking opportunity to experience the emergence of an urban beaver wetland first-hand.

Creating and restoring wildlife habitats with the Rewild London Fund

The Rewild London Fund is administered by Groundwork London to support land managers, and organisations working with them, to deliver priority habitat targets as part of the London Environment Strategy. The fund further supports London’s Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINCs) managers tackling barriers to good site management. Grants will support projects that showcase innovative or strategic approaches to improving the resilience of the SINC network.

The Rewild London Fund is supported by the Mayor’s Rewild London Fund and Amazon’s Right Now Climate Fund.

To date, the Mayor’s Rewild London fund, delivered in partnership with London Wildlife Trust has provided £2.3 million to projects across the capital and has helped to create or restore around 350 hectares of wildlife habitat – the equivalent of nearly 310 football pitches – bringing nature back into the city for all to enjoy. 

Apply now for funding with round 3 of the Rewild London Fund.

“This event shows the power of combining community projects with public sector funding to support species and habitats in London. In addition to beavers, other projects have restored wetland grazing marsh,  harvest mice and water voles to name just a few! The Rewild London fund has enabled community focused biodiversity projects throughout the capital over the past two years, and we are really excited to see more innovative and vital projects through the third round.” – Martin Petry, Grants Manager at Groundwork London

Beavers: The architects of nature

Beavers were hunted to extinction in England around 400 years ago. They are now being reintroduced across the country as part of a wider trend of reintroductions across England in recent years. Beaver colonies are now established in Kent, Cornwall, Devon, Derbyshire and Oxfordshire. Beavers are vital to helping other species to thrive. They build dams, dig canals and create dead wood consequently creating and maintaining a habitat for other life to flourish such as water voles, dragonflies, amphibians, birds, reptiles and fish.

Project partners will study the beavers in their new environment, monitoring the effects on water and flood levels and increased biodiversity in the area.

The latest round of Rewild London funding of £710,000 is now open! We welcome applications from community groups, boroughs and charities for schemes that will increase biodiversity and create more habitats for wildlife and plants to thrive in, making the city more resilient to the impacts of climate change. 

“I’m proud that we are turning London into a wildlife haven, as well as making the city more resilient to the effects of climate change, as we work to clean up our city, re-establish lost species and reconnect people and nature, building a greener, fairer city for all Londoners. I encourage groups to apply to the fund now.” – Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

“I am excited to learn more about this project, which furthers our understanding of how we can live together with nature.” – WWF Ambassador and Actor Miranda Richardson 

“In the face of a climate and ecological emergency it is partnerships like this one that will give hope for nature’s recovery. At the same it will help us all recover our lost connection with the natural world.” – David Mooney, CEO at London Wildlife Trust.

Discover Rewild London Fund and more available funds across London on our grants page.

  • Wild Isles. Register and attend the Q&A webinar on Monday 23rd October 2023 to find out more and get application support.
  • Crane Valley Grant Programme Project Fund. Grants are awarded to help deliver projects that improve carbon footprint, improve water flow, reduce flood risk, alongside other elements. Take a look at ideas outlined in the River Crane Smarter Water Catchment Plan and Update.
  • Our Space Award supports projects that seeks to help Londoners clean and green the city through active community engagement. The next application window is set to open at the end of October. 
  • If you’re looking to fund a grant, Our Space Award is seeking donations and new partners! Find out more here.

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State of Nature Report –

Interactive SINC map: