Giving something back

Community volunteers plant trees on restored landfill

Pupils from Barfield School in Farnham joined volunteers from the community, Surrey County Council and SUEZ staff this Friday to plant trees on a restored section of Runfold South Quarry and Landfill, located just to the east of Farnham in Surrey.

Runfold tree planting in January 2019The team worked together to plant a mix of trees native to the local area, including English oak, downy birch, field maple, wild cherry and hazel. The Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership provided tools and expertise, advising on proper planting technique.

This community work initiative was part of a wider restoration project for the former quarry, with SUEZ working to cap and landscape the site progressively and create a sustainable landform that blends with the natural surroundings. The aim is to complete restoration of the whole site by the end of 2021, at which point the footpath connecting Old Guildford Road with the North Downs Way, would be returned from its current diverted route to allowing public access across the centre of the former quarry site. Pupils from neighbouring Barfield School currently use one section of the completed site as a playing field for sports and outdoor activities, while other sections are being restored to woodland or agricultural grazing land.

The site has been active since 1951, first as a sand quarry and later as a landfill, and is one of only seven remaining operational landfills owned by SUEZ in the UK – an over 50% reduction since 2001 as the company embraces a circular economy based model.

James Reid, Headmaster, Barfield School said: “Barfield School is delighted to be part of this community project. We are keen to support the restoration plan, and this tree planting is a positive step which will complement the beautiful trees which surround Barfield and the local area.”

Runfold tree planting in January 2019