Tim McGrath

Head of Project Develolpment (nature based solutions)

Contact details


About me

I have worked with WWT since 2009 after working the previous 20 years within the Wildlife Trusts. My background is in habitat management and volunteer engagement and I have worked in Surrey, Wiltshire, Shropshire and ‘Avon’ before coming to WWT. In 2004, I spent a year with Rural Development Agency working on Exmoor Environmentally Sensitive Area and Wessex Region Countryside Stewardship Schemes.

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Biology & Chemistry and a Masters in Environmental Conservation; however, in my free time I am often found either staring skywards for orbiting raptors or looking at plants in a vague attempt to botanise.

My role

My work at WWT has always been around developing and delivering wetland projects that provide a benefit to people and wildlife. When I started, I was WWTs Senior Project Manager in the creation of Steart Marshes, a 500ha wetland creation scheme on the Somerset coastline. Following this, as Senior Project Manager (Wetland Landscapes) I supported the development and delivery of projects within our Rural Landscapes and Waterscapes Programmes. In particular, the Two Valleys Project, a Natural Flood Management scheme in West Somerset that demonstrated where WWT could work with the local communities to create interventions that stored water within the landscape of two river catchments.

In 2021, I became Head of Project Development a role that facilitated the development of major conservation projects with support from all Directorates, helping to deliver our strategic objectives; in particular, setting up a major saltmarsh restoration project supported through our relationship with Aviva plc. Between July 2023 & Jan 2024, I was appointed as interim Director of Conservation, a position that is underpinned by the ground-breaking and innovative work that WWT’s Conservation Directorate both lead the way in and deliver on the ground.

Now back in my previous role as Head of Project Development I am also working to coordinate WWT’s approach to its Natural Capital work, to ensure that this plays a vital and valuable part in delivering our strategic wetland restoration ambitions throughout both our UK and International activities. All of this needs to be underpinned with a clear understanding of the science behind these values, the financial investment they can realise and the overall benefits restored wetlands bring to society and biodiversity.

Experience and interests

  • Ornithologist – Excellent birder, experienced in Breeding Bird Survey & Common Bird Census
  • Botanist – Phase 1 & National Vegetation Classification
  • Entomologist – particularly odonata & orthoptera
  • Habitat management and land management
  • Practical DIYer and mountain walker


McGrath, Tim., 1995: Curlew count 1994. A survey of the curlew Numenius arquata in the Braydon Forest area of north Wiltshire. Hobby. 1994( ); 21: 97-104 (Wiltshire Ornithological Society)

McGrath, Tim., 2022: To enable communities to engage with the biggest European tidal flat and saltmarsh restoration project. Coastal Wetlands Restoration Public Perception and Community Development ISBN: 978-0-367-86308. Routledge

Pontee, Nigel. McGrath, Tim. et al., 2015: Delivering Large Habitat Restoration Schemes: Lessons from the Steart Coastal Management Project Coastal Management Conference 2015, Changing Coast, Changing Climate, Changing Minds

Yamashita, Hiromi. McGrath, Tim. et al 2021: Communication and Engagement. Saltmarsh Restoration Handbook UK & Ireland (Environment Agency/Defra)

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