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Council encourages tree planting ahead of National Tree Week

As National Tree Week begins on Saturday, South Oxfordshire District Council is encouraging community groups and residents across the district to plant trees to help tackle the climate emergency.

Through its grants schemes, partnerships, and its  policy for planting trees on council-owned land the council aims to contribute to national tree planting campaigns including the government’s target to increase tree planting to 30,000 hectares per year across the UK by 2025.

The council has already funded tree planting projects in Crowmarsh, Culham, Didcot, Eye and Dunsden, Stanton St John, Thame, Tiddington, Wallingford, Wheatley and Woodcote through its councillor community grants scheme. Applications are still open and are available through the council’s grants page.

In addition, the council supports the Queen’s Green Canopy which aims to create a living legacy of trees planted in Her Majesty’s name. In South Oxfordshire alone around 3,700 trees have been recorded so far on the Queen’s Green Canopy map.

The council has also produced a tree planting guide for communities which gives information on how, when, where and which types of trees to plant.

Cllrs Ian Snowdon and Peter Dragonetti, South Oxfordshire District Council’s Tree Champions said: “National Tree Week celebrates the winter tree planting season and we are delighted to support efforts by local people to plant even more trees in our district.

“This could be on private or public land, involving community groups planting hundreds of saplings or individuals adding one or two small trees to their gardens. With the right tree in the right place, they can all make a difference. Trees capture and store carbon dioxide and so are vital in helping us to tackle the climate emergency for people and nature. 

“Beyond the obvious environmental advantages, trees also provide great health and wellbeing benefits for everyone in our community and provide wonderful scenery across our towns, villages and countryside.

“As a district council, we will do all we can to support tree planting across South Oxfordshire and to encourage residents, community groups and businesses to get involved with tree planting projects and tell us about it so we can spread the word and encourage others.”

How to get involved with tree planting

In the first instance, speak  to your local climate action group, town or parish council, employer or business park to see if there are projects happening locally that you can get involved with. 

If you can’t find a project locally, please get in touch with Oxfordshire Treescapes ProjectWild Oxfordshire or The Woodland Trust for advice on how you can start your own project.

Free trees are available for community groups from The Conservation Volunteers’ ‘I dig trees’ campaign or The Woodland Trust for schools  and for landowners and farmers.

Notes to editors

National Tree Week runs from Saturday 26 November to Sunday 4 December. More information at the National Tree Week website.

Picture shows tree planting by Wheatley Parish Council thanks to our councillor community grant scheme.

Links to websites for further reading

Queen’s Green Canopy

Climate Action Oxfordshire website