Our directory of things of interest

LINESCAPES: Remapping and Reconnecting Britain's Fragmented Wildlife by Hugh Warwick

LINESCAPES: Remapping and Reconnecting Britain's Fragmented Wildlife by Hugh Warwick
18 Oct
Dartmoor National Park might appear wild, but it’s the lines that give it away. Ancient walls, reaves, tracks, terraces, tin mining gorges, leats... they all create vivid lines which tell deep stories about thousands of years of human habitation

While the observation that much of the planet — particularly the UK — has been divided up for purposes other than ecology isn’t a new one, Warwick has hit on a fresh approach by pointing out that nature doesn’t really do straight lines, yet straight lines are exactly what we have introduced. Therefore, which species thrive in a human-dominated environment depends primarily on how suitable they are to living along narrow corridors. He wants us to ‘think hedgehog’, to imagine the world from the perspective of vulnerable wildlife in search of safe habitat in Britain’s carved up landscape.

Ditches. Dykes. Canals. The full extent to which the British landscape is divided up with artificial lines is disorienting. Some of our infrastructure, as Warwick points out, is often not as harshly sterile and devoid of life as might be imagined; many grassy verges besides motorways and train lines have created microhabitats for numerous plants and animals unable to survive in more regularly trodden patches of land. The book does fleetingly cast an eye away from British shores, to parts of the world where lines are producing quite dramatic changes to the planet, such as the under-construction Great Green Wall in the Sahara. It feels hard to shake the feeling that this global view would have been of great benefit throughout, instead of getting bogged down in the nitty-gritty of domestic matters. However, Warwick has probed some interesting perspectives, serious food for thought whatever your stance on conservation.

Click here to purchase Linescapes by Hugh Warwick via Amazon

red line


Geographical Week

Get the best of Geographical delivered straight to your inbox by signing up to our free weekly newsletter!

red line

Geographical Week

Get the best of Geographical delivered straight to your inbox every Friday.

Subscribe Today

Adventure Canada


Aberystwyth University University of Greenwich The University of Winchester




Travel the Unknown


Like longer reads? Try our in-depth dossiers that provide a comprehensive view of each topic

  • National Clean Air Day
    For National Clean Air Day, Geographical brings together stories about air pollution and the kind of solutions needed to tackle it ...
    The Air That We Breathe
    Cities the world over are struggling to improve air quality as scandals surrounding diesel car emissions come to light and the huge health costs of po...
    Diabetes: The World at Risk
    Diabetes is often thought of as a ‘western’ problem, one linked to the developed world’s overindulgence in fatty foods and chronic lack of physi...
    The Nuclear Power Struggle
    The UK appears to be embracing nuclear, a huge U-turn on government policy from just two years ago. Yet this seems to be going against the grain globa...
    The true cost of meat
    As one of the world’s biggest methane emitters, the meat industry has a lot more to concern itself with than merely dietary issues ...


NEVER MISS A STORY - Follow Geographical on Social

Want to stay up to date with breaking Geographical stories? Join the thousands following us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and stay informed about the world.

More articles in REVIEWS...


by Kristy Leissle • Polity Press • £14.99 (paperback)


by Christopher Somerville  •  Black Swan Publishing  •  £9.99 (paperback)


by Doug Scott  •  Vertebrate Publishing  •  £20 (hardback)


by Ursula Martin  •  Honno Press  •  £12.99 (paperback)


by Navid Kermani  •  Polity Books  •  £17.99 (paperback)


by Julian Sayarer • Arcadia Books • £9.99 (hardback)


by Robin Hanbury-Tenison • IB Tauris • £17.99 (hardback)


by Daniel Schwartz •  Thames & Hudson •  £40 (hardback)


by Nigel Hughes • £25 (hardback)


by Caitlin Doughty • Weidenfeld & Nicolson • £14.99/£7.99 (hardback/eBook)


directed by Ivo Van Hove •  National Theatre


by Norman Davies • Allen Lane • £30 (hardback)


This intimate east London exhibition provides a multi-sensory exploration into…


by Kiyonori Kanasaka (translated by Nicholas Pertwee) • Renaissance Books…


by Steven Price Brown • Bloomsbury • £16.99 (hardback/eBook)


by Jo Woolf • Sandstone Press • £24.99 (hardback)


An epic journey through the Amazon in a traditional dugout…


by Victor Mallet • Oxford University Press • £20 (hardback/eBook)