Trees please local authorities

As our Jubilee Woods project comes to an end, after the planting of the 6 millionth tree recently, I have been reflecting on the success of the project and how incredible the level of participation was.  

Tree planting is fun! And can save local authorities money

Tree planting is fun! And can save local authorities money

In the Government Affairs team, part of our job is to work closely with Local Authorities. So I am particularly pleased to see that so many of them have partnered with us in planting millions of trees across the country. It goes to show that even in these tough times, it is possible to prioritise tree planting and important to do so, as it helps local authorities to achieve a lot, whilst also potentially saving them money. Life really is better with trees.

This has inspired me to put together a map showing recent planting by Local Authorities, in the hope that we can inspire others to consider this… 

Planting trees:

  • can save mowing costs – as shown in our ‘Trees or Turf’ Report
  • improves air quality and lowers asthma rates as detailed in our ‘Trees Are Good For You document (pdf)
  • planting can be fully funded
  • better access to woodland is good for peoples physical and mental health
  • reduces noise pollution
  • can help with flood alleviation
  • increases property prices 

….the list of reasons to plant trees is very long indeed! It may take a bit of creative thinking in these economic times, but all this recent planting just goes to show that it is possible.

Ellie Henderson, Regional Policy Officer – South East


About Kaye Brennan

Trying vegan, staying warm. Occasional bursts of words.
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9 Responses to Trees please local authorities

  1. Pingback: Tree-mendous result for Doncaster’s Mayoral elections | Woodland Matters

  2. Just to make it a little easier for readers:

    To find out more about our free tree packs for communities, schools and youthe groups go to

    To find out more about our larger-scale planting schemes go to

    Hope that helps!

  3. Clive Anthony Ramsey says:

    Inn densely populated areas foot traffic becomes a problem. (Also bikes and football etc) Trees are ok in winter but during periods of drought or even reduced rainfall, grass erosion can become a problem.
    Councils are mad keen to mow grass so the cost of mowing does not come into it.
    The battle is to retain some longer grass areas so that wild flowers can flourish.
    The other difficulty is that without long grass and trees it all starts to look like green concrete.
    Councillors in many areas are not too bright and lack any sense of making a place feel like somewhere to defend and care for. You cannot put heart, art and brain where it does not exist.
    Money given for planting trees needs to extend across over five years.
    Councils love to “Acheive The Spend ” all in one year so that it looks good for them and not any successor.
    It is alos vital not to provide a haven for muggers alongside roads.
    I far prefer hedgerows to dreary institutionally placed identical trees that are a set distance apart.
    Council grdeners can also be a cause for despair. On a sports ground where I live crocuses have been set in grass in a long uninspiring line. No charm or imagination and little point in their being there.They might as well be plastic!
    Developpers are required to give money for tree planting and one small development is being asked for £15,000. That is not actually a lot. BUT it should be clear where the trees are to be located, what they are for and the local populace should be involved. It must not all be blown in one short burst and must be ring fenced.
    In Epping Forest urban area of Leytonstone WHIPPS CROSS is a good case study. Areas of grass are getting worn from foot traffic, there is little grass beneath trees. It has its “dogging area” both for humans and dogs!
    At Friday Hill, Chingford, our community association are being required to give £1000 for trees.
    It is hard to see where they will go in the immediate locality.

    • richard markjham says:

      i agree totally although there has to be somewhere to park cars

    • Ellie Henderson says:

      Hi Clive. Thanks for your comments. In reference to some of your points… our tree packs are a mix of native species, according to what communities have asked for (and what suits the space they have in mind).
      Agree with you that street trees are very important. Part of my job is to comment on Local Authority plans and we try to make sure there is strong wording to enasure that any street trees are replaced (ideally 2:1 ratio).

  4. This has been a really great initiative, and thank you for it. However, my village took advantage of the offer and planted the trees in a block on a wide verge and, to my mind, they are too close together and will need thinning. Just down the entrance road into the village, there is another wide verge where there are no shrubs or trees in, what was, a hedgerow. I wish that this had been replaced instead; it would have restored a wildlife habitat and, much more valuable, in my opinion. Just a thought!

    • Ellie Henderson says:

      Hi Wende. Thanks for your comment and support. Glad to hear that your village was recently involved in tree planting. My colleague John has recently written a blog on tree maintenance and survival – which might help in future with issues like spacing. There is also a link to a ‘how to’ video there. You could always look at planting up the verge another time.

  5. Peter Kyte says:

    It is important to always remember, that trees are our lungs, as a species we would suffer severe decline without them. So it not just altruistic to plant trees it is in our self interest to do so.

    • Ellie Henderson says:

      Hi Peter. Thanks for your comment. I like your reference to trees being our lungs. There is some interesting research out there that shows that an increase in tree cover helps to reduce asthma rates – which is quite apt. Also a potential saving there in terms of reduced health costs.

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