More 'beaver zones' to be built at flood-prone estate


Two more Eurasian Beaver enclosures are to be built in the area of Essex where a pair of the animals was released into the wild for the first time in 400 years.

In 2019, two beavers were introduced at the Spains Hall Estate near Braintree to help reduce flooding. A year later the pair, nicknamed 'Woody' and 'Willow', had two offspring. The estate at Finchingfield flooded in 2012 and 2014.

Two Eurasian Beavers were introduced to the Spains Hall Estate in Essex in 2019 (Mark Hows).

Archie Ruggles-Brise, estate manager, said: "The chance to bring more natural engineering skills to the estate is beyond exciting. Since 2019 we've seen what beavers can do to reduce flood risk, increase drought resilience, clean water and create year-round habitat for wildlife."

He said the beavers would make the estate "more able to weather the changes climate change will bring, and all the while providing inspiration and experience that others can use elsewhere".

The £350,000 project, funded by an environmental partnership, will see two new 24-ha enclosures built, 10 times the size of the original enclosure which was built in 2019.