Life and Medical Sciences Field Centre

The Bayfordbury Campus covers over 40 ha and consists of a variety of habitats including amenity grassland, semi-natural woodlands (secondary and ancient), grasslands, ponds, a Lake, scrubland and hedgerows. The main building houses the student teaching and project labs as well as controlled environment chambers. There are also a number of glasshouses and an experimental plot. Students and staff from the School of Life and Medical Sciences use the campus as a field centre and have access to all the facilities mentioned above.

The undergraduate curriculum of the BSc (Hons) degrees in Geography and Environmental Management has incorporated a range of practicals and projects here since the mid 1970s. The field sampling and associated laboratory work at the site form an essential and integral part of these degrees. Postgraduate research supervised by the ecology and plant pathology staff is also undertaken here. Academic staff from the department of Biological and Environmental Sciences  developed the original Management Plan for the Bayfordbury Campus and continue to update it for the University Estates Department. The site is managed for education, biodiversity and research.

Surrounded by arable farmland and horse pasture, Bayfordbury Campus is a haven for wildlife with over 8 species of bats recorded to date. The close proximity of wildlife rich habitats and teaching facilities including labs, glasshouses and controlled environment chambers,  provides an ideal location for teaching ecology, biology, earth science, soil science, and other environmental subject areas. Long term monitoring of the wildlife also allows the Campus to essentially function as an ecological laboratory by local naturalists, researchers and students.

History

The original Bayfordbury Estate was developed in 1757, and included an ornamental lake, plantation woodland and a Pinetum (from 1767).

the lake at bayfordbury 

Further information on the habitats at Bayfordbury including the grasslands, lake, and woodlands as well as how current students make use of the Field Centre can be found following the links. Further details about the Pinetum are also provided.

Work experience opportunities

At the Bayfordbury Field Centre we are keen to arrange work experience placements in the summer for A level students interested in studying Biology, Ecology, Geography or Environment related degrees. If you are interested, please contact Dr Chantal Helm by email.