Ambitious plans to plant 700,000 trees across Leicestershire have passed the halfway mark – with more than 356,000 now planted.
The landmark is another leap forward in Leicestershire County Council’s pledge to plant one tree for every person in the county and to help secure a greener future for Leicestershire.
The council supports the initiative by planting trees directly, applying for funding or giving away free trees for suitable sites. It has also called on members of the public and other organisations to join its commitment by recording tree planting initiatives themselves.
In 2023 alone, the authority gave away a total of 50,000 trees through its partnership with the Woodland Trust through its free tree scheme to farmers, landowners, community groups, parish councils and schools in a bid to encourage more tree planting across Leicestershire, and is hoping to exceed that number in 2024.
Our pledge to plant 700,000 trees shows our commitment to helping to combat the effects of climate change and to make Leicestershire a cleaner and greener place.Person:Councillor Blake Pain, cabinet member for the environment and the green agenda
It is a huge achievement to have passed the halfway mark, and I would like to thank everyone who has helped us to reach this major milestone in our planting programme.
Over the last year, the council has supported and been involved with a number of tree planting schemes across the county, working with farmers, landowners, community and nature groups to supply trees and help with the planting.
These planting schemes include:
- The planting of a new tiny forest at the Hermitage Recreation Ground in Coalville, in partnership with North West Leicestershire District Council. 600 fast-growing native trees have been planted in an area the size of a tennis court.
- Nearly 30,000 trees planted at the Nailstone Platinum Jubilee Wood – a country park and environmental education centre managed by environmental company Maydencroft as part of a larger site associated with the adjacent supermarket distribution centre.
People across the county are being invited to play their part in making Leicestershire greener by planting their own trees and then recording them using the online tree recording form. These new trees will then contribute towards the 700,000 trees target, shown on the interactive tree map.
In February 2023, the council unveiled plans to develop a community tree nursery in partnership with the National Forest, to collect seeds and grow 20,000 trees per year to plant across Leicestershire.
The nursery will also supply the National Forest Company and potentially other local authorities – although most of the trees grown at the site will be planted within the county.
The free tree and hedgerow packs, supplied in partnership with the Woodland Trust, are designed to help renew and restore existing woodland and vegetation, as well as replacing trees which have been affected by diseases such as ash dieback.