Godwin Farm Park in Surrey British Columbia Canada

Biodiversity-Preserve-Park

Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park in Surrey BC is a 26 acre oasis in an urban setting

Surrey park is a nature preserve including hundreds of towering trees, a pond, old-field habitat, trails and benches

Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park is known locally as Godwin Park or Godwin Farm Park. It has the ambiance of a farm with the unmown fields and seems far from the city even though it is surrounded by Surrey BC subdivisions. On the other hand, instead of tramping across country fields, there is a lovely walking path throughout the park. People were walking, jogging, or pushing a baby stroller in the sunshine.

Pond at Godwin Farm Park in Surrey British Columbia. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Treed pathways. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Tree reflecting in the pond at Godwin Farm Park. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Bridge reflection. Photo by Diana Mohrsen

The Story behind the Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park

Tom Godwin and his wife Elaine purchased a farm property in Surrey British Columbia in 1969. It was here they raised their sons: Michael, David, Andrew and Stephen. While farming the property, they also restored a salmon stream and constructed a pond. It is important to realize that over the years Surrey has changed and grown substantially. Eventually the many farms in the past were replaced by urban development.

Can't Be Too Many Trees

 A cardiologist by trade, Tom Godwin was also passionate about trees and believed there could never be too many of them. As a result he collected trees from various places and began planting them on his Surrey property. When the family vacationed, he would choose trees to bring back. From across North America, seeds and seedlings eventually made their way to the Godwin farm. The family lived on the property for 45 years developing much of what you see today. For instance, the beautiful mature redwoods are just one example of Godwin's vision.

Ecological Gifts Program

In 2015 the Godwin family donated a portion of their farm property, 26 acres, to the City of Surrey through Canada's Ecological Gifts Program. Consequently the City of Surrey went on to develop the land into a Biodiversity Preserve, now known as the Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park.

Sign about the Godwin family. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Walking trail between trees and meadows. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Map of park. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Sunlight and trees. Photo by Diana Mohrsen

"Don't judge every day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant."

by Robert Louis Stevenson

Biodiversity in Godwin Park

One of the principles supporting the City of Surrey Management Plan for the Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park was biodiversity. I quote from their plan which calls for a park in which "a diversity of natural and cultivated landscapes provide habitat for fish, wildlife, plants, and other organisms."

What makes up diversity at Godwin Park?

There is diversity among the variety of trees. There is a Sycamore Maple, native to central Europe and areas of Asia. There is an English Oak that is an amazing 175 feet tall. You will find Sequoia, and Redwood Fir along with many other species. Moreover, the landscape includes both natural and cultivated lands. In the orchard you can find apples, figs, and blueberries. In addition the park supports movement of wildlife by the choice of fencing material. There is a healthy environment for fish. As well, in the park you will find a variety of birds, insects, plants and other organisms. 

Birdhouse. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Dragonfly on stem. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Wood duck nesting box. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Frog legs visible in pond. Photo by Diana Mohrsen

Fences allow movement of wildlife

The split rail fences at the Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park are low enough to allow the passage of animals across the property. This was an intended feature of the park. Not only can a deer easily leap over them, but also these fences make a beautiful border between areas of land. 

Signs of Animals

In the orchard area, there were places where the long grass was pressed down. In this case one guess would be the resting place of a deer after checking out or dining on fallen fruit. At several places on the trail there were animal droppings.  Certainly a sign of some visiting animal, possibly a coyote. In order to protect wildlife, no dogs are permitted in the park. 

Wooden fences in park. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Neighbouring properties in distance. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
The old orchard. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Inviting pathway at Godwin Farm Park. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Split rail fence and thistle. Photo by Diana Mohrsen

"In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous."

by Aristotle

Walk in the Surrey Sunshine or Enjoy the Shaded Paths

The well maintained pathways invite jogging or walking, whether in full sunshine or along shaded paths. From time to time, I encountered joggers as well as small groups of people strolling around the park. One mother carried an infant while another young child walked beside her. Another pushed a stroller.

Various Areas in the Park

There are different areas to enjoy as you explore the park. There is the old orchard with apple trees, blueberries and a fig tree. In the center of the trails, there is a pond with beautiful reflections. The trail actually circles the pond. In addition, you'll walk by old-field habitat where only the vegetation at the edge of the path has been mowed. The grasses grow tall and provide a home or food for insects and birds. In the distance you might see a rabbit or spot a trail through the grass or undergrowth made by some small creature. And everywhere in this park you will discover various species of mature trees providing shade along the pathways

Joggers in Godwin Farm Park. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
A selfie at the pond. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
A mom with two little ones. Photo by Diana Mohrsen
Storage building beside pathway. Photo by Diana Mohrsen

Godwin Farm Park in the Fleetwood area of Surrey BC

Enjoy the ambiance of a family farm in the midst of busy Surrey BC. Gather for a family picnic or enjoy the fresh air by walking or jogging.

Diana Mohrsen is the author of two books: Introspect - A Working Journal and Secret Destinations, a travelogue about her solo travels through Alberta and BC.  She can be contacted at dmohrsen(at)gmail.com

Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park

Surrey British Columbia

Location (Map)

Godwin Farm Biodiversity Preserve Park, 9016 164 St, Surrey, BC V4N 2Z8, Canada
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Comments 9

Andrea Horning on Monday, 11 September 2023 00:37

Beautiful photos. Really captured this park nicely.

Beautiful photos. Really captured this park nicely.
Cary Horning on Monday, 11 September 2023 03:05

Lovely photos Diana!

Lovely photos Diana!
EH Canada Marketing Group on Monday, 11 September 2023 16:51

Yes, I agree beautiful photos Diana. Like that you are commentating now too.

Yes, I agree beautiful photos Diana. Like that you are commentating now too.
Diana Mohrsen on Thursday, 14 September 2023 03:56

Thanks! I appreciate your comments.

Thanks! I appreciate your comments.
Diana Mohrsen on Monday, 11 September 2023 21:56

Andrea Horning Thanks, Andrea.

Andrea Horning Thanks, Andrea.
Diana Mohrsen on Monday, 11 September 2023 23:00

Cary Horning Thanks, Cary. It was a lovely park to visit.

Cary Horning Thanks, Cary. It was a lovely park to visit.
Sonya Richmond on Tuesday, 12 September 2023 02:41

I love stories like this, which highlihght how much of a difference one person can make. The park looks beautiful, and preserving biodiversity is such an important thing. Thank you for sharing!

I love stories like this, which highlihght how much of a difference one person can make. The park looks beautiful, and preserving biodiversity is such an important thing. Thank you for sharing!
Diana Mohrsen on Wednesday, 13 September 2023 23:03

Me too! I am amazed that one person or one family can actually leave a legacy like this.

Me too! I am amazed that one person or one family can actually leave a legacy like this.
Cora Lee Rennie on Tuesday, 12 September 2023 22:25

Another beautiful park adventure in BC! It looks so lush and green there - beautiful photos!

Another beautiful park adventure in BC! It looks so lush and green there - beautiful photos!
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Monday, 20 May 2024