Since the idea of rewilding took hold, it has generally been seen as a rural pursuit involving withdrawal from farmland so that animals and vegetation can restore their own ecology.
At its most herbivorous, it includes allowing hedgerows or scrub to flourish unchecked. At its most primal, it involves deliberately releasing animals such as beavers or wolves in the belief that the re-entry of a single alpha species brings with it a cascade of ecological benefits.
Either way, rewilding has come to be associated with big acreages, whether that be at Knepp Park in Sussex or at the 18,000-acre Glenfeshie estate in the Cairngorms. The perception is that it is expensive, far away and often inaccessible. It certainly isn’t something that just anyone can do.
But what if the wildest places of all were right under our feet? In the forgotten spaces in our cities, rewilding has always happened…