Ray Butten

Volunteer Roaming Ranger, Polesden Lacey

Ray Butten - Volunteer Roaming Ranger

I have always loved the outdoors and becoming a roaming ranger at Polesden Lacey ticked all the boxes. I started early in 2015 and now I go roaming across the estate two days a week.

A team of volunteers clear coppice on Ranmore Common
I  live nearby in Banstead with my lovely partner Carol.
Back in the day I did seven years in the reserve forces, infantry regiment, then I was part of an armoured reconnaissance squadron. I left the armed forces back in the early 90s but I still keep in touch with the squadron as membership secretary of the Westminster Dragoons Regimental Association.
I then went on to qualify as a remedial massage therapist and I'm now the proud holder of the London College of Massage Diploma. I love motorbikes and I've got a Honda Goldwing 1800 and throughout the year I do a lot of military charity rides.
I a big fan of F1motor racing and classical music, and once upon a time I a DJ many years ago when I worked in hospital radio.
I love volunteering at Polesden Lacey, especially the colours of the changing seasons and the wildlife. Not many people can say their 'office' is 1400 acres of a beautiful estate, which is exactly where the volunteer roaming rangers spend most of their time.
It’s an all year round position so the change of seasons are quite spectacular. Apart from this I like talking to the people we meet and greet out and about on patrol, even the dogs. 
One last fun fact about me: I have a cat who's 26 years old.

More thoughts from Ray

A beautiful autumn landscape full of autumn colour

Day in the life of a roaming ranger

Read about the best and worst bits of being a volunteer roaming ranger at Polesden Lacey, patrolling an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the Surrey Hills.

Find our what it's like to be a roaming ranger