iSpy - looking out for nature

Habitats everywhere

Each of our stations can provide a unique habitat for local plants, animals and insects to thrive. 

That’s why we are on a mission to create wild gardens. These are areas which have been designed and maintained with nature in mind. 

They don’t look fancy, but provide food, a safe home, hiding place or even a sunbathing spot for local animals and insects. What can you spot in our wild gardens?

Where’s your nearest wild garden?

Check out on our network map what we are doing where.

iSpy looking at nature - a map of stations  across the South Western Railway with habitats for local plants, animals and insects to thrive

Code for the map:

  • Coloured green dots – Wild gardens where we have planted wildflower meadows and changed the vegetation to help or local biodiversity.
  • Blue rings/dots are RSPB flagships – these are stations where we have worked in partnership with RSPB to create wildlife gardens

Green dots:

  • Wraysbury
  • Ash Vale
  • Horsley
  • Godalming
  • Petersfield
  • Walton on Thames
  • Esher
  • Winnersh
  • Grateley
  • Gillingham
  • Winchester
  • Hinton Admiral
  • New Milton
  • Dorchester
  • Sth Salisbury
  • Templecombe

Blue dots:

  • Whitchurch & Overton – dormice: introduced native plants and maintain hedgerows and wildflowers
  • Andover - hedgehog: native vegetation to provide good cover and support local chalk downland
  • Warenham - sandlizard: rocks and open areas for sunbathing
  • Whimple – watervole: keep the stream freeflowing and banks maintained
  • RSPB Effingham Junction – bats and snakes: installed bat boxes, bug hotels and hidden snake covers
  • Gillingham – toads: introduced a toad hall for our residents
  • RSPB Oxhshott – pollinators: a healthland station teaming with life for local birds from the health
  • RSPB Hinchley Wood - insects and pollinators: woodland station built with bug hotels and habitats for 
  • Barnes – pollinators: working with the bee friendly trust, Wetland centre and friends of Barnes to encourage wildlife at this station
  • Richmond – pollinators: working with the bee friendly trust
  • Portsmouth Harbour – living wall
  • Kingston – living wall
  • Basingstoke – living wall
  • Hampton Court – living wall
  • Weymouth – living wall

Why not create your own wild garden at home?

Think how many visitors you could have! Why not set aside an area in your garden for nature or introduce a new home for a ladybird, bird or frog? The RSPB, who is one of our partners has some great tips, which can be found on their website here.