Free Tree Packs Scheme Now Open For Schools And Communities In The North West
photo by Eric Porter, Woodland Trust
Whether planting for The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, to help tackle climate change, or to improve local areas around the country, the Woodland Trust’s popular free tree pack scheme is now open for applications.
Schools and community groups across the North West are now able to apply for the first 1 million trees, and into 2022 there are over 3 million trees in total available via free tree packs.
Packs are sent out twice a year with November packs now available for order.
In Spring the uptake was high across the North West with 58,950 trees despatched for planting. These included:
8,640 to 119 schools and community groups in Cheshire;
5,805 to 51 organisations in Cumbria;
11,235 to 104 schools and community groups in Greater Manchester;
21,615 to 222 organisations in Lancashire;
1,380 to 8 groups in Manchester; and
10,275 to 104 schools and community groups in Merseyside.
The Woodland Trust is delighted to be a leading delivery partner of The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC) and is offering free trees as an amazing opportunity to help many thousands of schools and communities to plant trees to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022.
Applications are accepted on a first come, first served basis and the first million trees will be despatched in November during the planting season. The Trust welcomes applications from all types of community groups and people do not have to be part of a formal long-standing group, they just need to have a group name decided before they apply.
The packs, all generously funded by corporate partners, are available in a range of themes; year-long colour, a wild harvest, or a haven for wildlife. Another contains hardy species which tolerate exposed sites and dry areas or where water collects easily, there is even a working wood mix which could provide wood fuel or willow for weaving.
The packs also come in a range of sizes; 15 (perfect for urban areas and which can be split between neighbours where necessary), 30 (which will create a six-metre hedgerow or a tennis court-sized copse), 105 (enough to cover an area as big as four tennis courts) or 420 (to cover an area the size of a football pitch) and most can create fantastic hedgerows.
The Woodland Trust ask that trees are planted on publicly accessible land where possible, with the landowner’s permission, and that groups commit to caring for those trees as they establish and grow. Since 2004 the scheme has helped thousands of groups plant millions of trees and there is support for experienced and first-time tree planters! In Spring this year over 400,000 free trees were sent to keen planters across the country.
Senior project lead for the Woodland Trust Vicki Baddeley said:
“We’re always amazed by the appetite schools and communities have for tree planting. It is such a wonderful thing to do. It is a positive, life-affirming and life-changing action that people can take to mark momentous occasions like The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, to help tackle the climate and nature crises, or to make their local areas a bit greener. We find that once people have planted one tree, they usually want to do more.
“All the trees planted have a host of different benefits working hard to lock up carbon, improve soils and water, reduce the flow of flooding, provide shade and shelter, create havens for wildlife and a places to enjoy.”
Woodland Trust tree packs are generously funded by lead partners Sainsbury’s, Lloyds Bank, OVO Energy, DFS Furniture, players of People’s Postcode Lottery, Joules, Bank of Scotland and Sofology.
Packs contain a mix of UK sourced and grown native broadleaf species such as hazel, rowan, hawthorn, common oak, silver birch, wild cherry, elder, dogwood and holly.
To order free trees people can visit www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/freetrees
before August 25 and they’ll be delivered in November 2021.
All the trees are UK and Ireland Sourced-and-Grown (UKISG). Responsible tree procurement is central to developing resilient woodlands. The trees are currently shipped to England, Scotland, Wales and all UK islands apart from the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.
Unfortunately, packs cannot be despatched to Northern Ireland currently due to the NI Protocol, so cannot accept applications for Northern Ireland at this time. This matter is trying to be resolved and updates in due course.