Tree numbers blossom across the region

By Lucy Todman | Shrewsbury | News | Published:

Thousands of trees will be planted in Shropshire this spring thanks to an initiative run by the Woodland Trust.

Trees for Shropshire

In the West Midlands, 26, 670 free trees are being sent out to 196 organisations and in Shropshire 3,435 trees have been given to 21 organisations including 420 saplings to Shropshire Beekeeping Association in Shrewsbury to create an apiary and wildlife area.

The Trust will give away one million trees to schools and communities for the first time in a single season.

Beccy Speight, chief executive of the Woodland Trust said: “We’ve been close to hitting one million free trees for schools and community groups for several years, but this is the first time we’ve ever sent out that magic number in a single season. It’s a real milestone for the Trust and we’re proud to have achieved such a momentous task.

“There’s a real passion for planting across the UK. People want to feel they are making a difference. Trees resonate on so many levels – they make where we live more beautiful, they help clean our air, improve our soils, clean and hold back water, provide a home for wildlife and help us address the causes and impacts of climate change.

“Improving mental health and well-being is high on the social agenda and urban trees in particular can help people to feel the benefits of being outdoors. Feedback that we’ve received from recipients of free trees is that improved well-being was one of their top reasons to apply. They also reported a sense of real achievement and fulfilment when planting.”

Every tree has been UK sourced and grown as part of the Trust’s quality assurance scheme to guarantee the provenance of native trees and the aim of the scheme is to reduce the risk of importing pests and diseases with planting stock grown outside the UK.

The packs are funded by lead partners Sainsbury’s, players of People’s Postcode Lottery, and Yorkshire Tea. In addition, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has supported the Trust to provide 100,000 trees a year to state funded primary schools in England over four years. DEFRA also funds four regional project officers to support schools to assist them with tree pack applications helping to increase the spread of green space.

Since the initiative started in 2010, 5.8 million trees have been sent to schools and community groups keen to improve their local area.

Lucy Todman

By Lucy Todman

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star and Shrewsbury Chronicle based in Shrewsbury.


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