Testimonial – Rosamond Richardson

When I first met Andrew in a field in Essex (he was advising its owners on turning it into a nature reserve), I was struck by his gentle manner. In no time at all I realised that this quietly-spoken man was fired by a passion for his subject, and that there was nothing he didn’t know about––in this case––trees and wild flowers and their habitats and ecology. Steeped in knowledge of the natural world, he clearly also had a designer’s eye, an eye for the picturesque and for the aesthetics of planning. His imaginative ideas for the nature reserve resulted in a highly professional site analysis, an expert study of the prospective habitat creation, and a detailed diary for preliminary works and eventual planting––while underlining the importance for a new nature reserve to source its materials and plants locally. His planting plan was a work of beauty.

Later I was to discover the depths of Andrew’s relationship with plants, birds and the environment when he undertook to introduce me to the wildlife of Skye, where he lives surrounded by wild flowers, corncrakes, whinchats, and one of the few remaining elm woods in the British Isles. He is a man most at ease in outdoor gear and wellington boots, observing the minutiae of nature and sharing his enthusiasm and knowledge freely. And to top it all, he is nice. He wears his learning lightly and is self-deprecating to a fault. It wasn’t until I’d known him for the good part of a year that I discovered what there is to find on his CV: he is far too modest to mention the glittering pathway of his career. He is a genuine, an authentic, a man with a sense of humour and who makes good friends, a fascinating companion when you are looking at wildlife, and a mine of interesting information and expertise. Andrew is the real thing.

Rosamond Richardson
Rosamond is the author of several books about the countryside, and a regular contributor to Country Life, LandScape, and The Countryman https://sites.google.com/site/rosamondrichardson/