The Friends of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve (registered charity no. 269535) was founded in 1973 to raise money in order to improve and enlarge the nature reserve and to do so by encouraging interest in the conservation of wildlife and scenic beauty within the area. The FRIENDS now have more than 2000 members who make a big difference to the reserve by providing funds, but many also give their time as volunteers - opening the Information Centre or helping with practical habitat management. The FRIENDS work in partnership with Sussex Wildlife Trust, other local organisations and landowners through a management committee to agree the way forward.

The FRIENDS contribute so much to the work of the nature reserve in a variety of ways, they:

  • make significant contributions to most of the nature reserve's wildlife projects,
  • contributed to the purchase of Castle Water by the Sussex Wildlife Trust.
  • run the Lime Kiln Cottage Information Centre,
  • created the Wader Pool near the river,
  • funded the vehicles,
  • provide two offices and a workshop,
  • part-fund the four nature reserve staff,
  • funded five bird watching hides (all now with wheelchair access).

You can join the FRIENDS for as little as £5 or as much as you would like on the form downloaded by clicking this link - Friends membership form

You can now join online on the Friends website by clicking here

Members receive three Newsletters a year that give details of the wildlife and special events just for FRIENDS, including guided walks and winter talks. But the real benefit in supporting the FRIENDS is knowing that you are helping us deliver improvements at Rye Harbour Nature Reserve for wildlife and people.

The FRIENDS next big project is working with the Sussex Wildlife Trust on the creation of a new Visitor Centre.

The current committee is...

CHAIRMAN: Cliff Dean


SECRETARY: John Trowell

TREASURER: Mike Russell


COMMITTEE: Morgan Greenhalf, John Willsher, Geoffrey Crane, Alan Martin, Colin Page.