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200 new trees planted thanks to Forestry Commission funding

Posted by Communications on 3 March 2022 | Comments

Last month, more than 200 new trees were planted by Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils, thanks to a previously successful Suffolk bid to the Forestry Commission's Local Authority Treescapes Fund.

The planting forms part of the councils' work to protect and strengthen the districts' biodiversity and tackle climate change, in line with it's Biodiversity Action Plan.

In Mid Suffolk, with the help of local volunteers, over 100 trees have been planted at the council's Needham Lake nature reserve, which was ranked Visit England’s 12th most visited free tourist attraction in the UK during 2020.

A further 40 trees will be planted at Green's Meadow in Stowmarket shortly.

In Babergh, over 60 trees have been planted at Broom Hill nature reserve in Hadleigh, with the help of local volunteers from the Hadleigh Environmental Action Team (HEAT).

All projects are thanks to £57k of funding from the Forestry Commission's Local Authority Treescapes Fund, after Suffolk County Council led a successful £150k bid on behalf of Suffolk's authorities last year to boost the county's tree coverage by planting 3,000 new trees.

The money covers the cost of planting the new trees, as well as the required maintenance and management costs over the next four years.

All trees have been dedicated to the Queen's Green Canopy in Suffolk, being coordinated by the Suffolk Lieutenancy.

Councillor Jessica Fleming, cabinet member for environment at Mid Suffolk District Council, said:

“This is welcome news and a vital step in achieving our biodiversity ambitions for the district – protecting and strengthening our plant life and wildlife.

“Covid has highlighted the importance of our green spaces and nature, and their impact on our wellbeing, more than ever before – with our Needham Lake site, set to receive new trees thanks to this funding, having also been ranked Visit England’s 12th most visited free tourist attraction in the UK during 2020.”

Councillor Elisabeth Malvisi, cabinet member for climate change, biodiversity and sustainable transport at Babergh District Council, said:

“Improving tree coverage in our district, with the right sort of trees in the right places, is one of the key elements of our Biodiversity Action Plan. We all recognise that trees are vital not only in supporting our communities’ health and wellbeing, but in providing habitat for our wildlife so necessary to our joint survival.

“The funding is playing a significant role in helping us achieve this, by enabling us to build on our work already underway to map, in detail, the tree coverage as well as the all-important existing and potential wildlife corridors in Babergh.”