Queen Gets Wood!
The Woodland Trust has revealed the locations of sixty sites for new woods in the UK. In a project to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee landowners have planted millions of trees with each plot averaging around 60 acres, which is about the same as 30 football pitches. The landowners included schools, colleges, race courses, local councils as well as the National Trust. The plan is to plant a total of six million trees in 2012 which includes 250 smaller woods as a lasting commemoration of the 60 years of the Queens reign. Both the Queen and Prince Charles are said to be thrilled. Prince Charles is well known for his love of trees including a well reported penchant for talking to plants.
The flagship wood is being created in Leicestershire in the National Forest Estate although so many landowners came forward to offer their support that the options for the organisers were numerous. The emphasis has been on sustainability and to create thriving eco-systems within the areas so it’s not just about the trees. The flagship wood in Leicestershire will be bigger than the total area of Regent Park in London and the National Trust said it would create a habitat for wildlife ranging from otters to Yellowhammers.
The Diamond Woods as they are being referred to will only be made up of native tree species and can be found in the following areas, Truro in Cornwall, Stornoway in the Outer Hebrides, next to Loch Ness in Scotland and at the Universities of Nottingham, Warrick and York. In fact there were so many offers of land to plant commemorative trees that 25 ‘Princess Woods’ are now planned to commemorate the years before the Queens accession.
Georgina McLeod is director of the Jubilee Woods for the Woodland Trust and she said,
"We're absolutely delighted that so many different organisations and landowners have joined with the Trust to create these 60 very special Diamond Woods. They will help make a massive difference to the environment and pay a special tribute to Her Majesty the Queen.” Yet many people across the UK have expressed their dismay that millions of pounds is being spent on the jubilee without any lasting legacy or anything to show for it. Georgina McLeod addresses this point, “By the end of the project millions of people will have planted trees, a testament this to the nation's love for trees and our second longest reigning monarch." It is good news for supporters of the monarchy and republicans as the woods project will benefit the whole country, not just the people either but millions of forest dwelling creatures now with new digs after this year.