Mayor announces new funding for thousands of trees

03 May 2013

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson today announced funding for thousands of new trees and a week of events to encourage Londoners to appreciate their local trees and woodland.

In a range of initiatives to boost tree planting, the Mayor is opening up funding bids for 5,000 more street trees as part of his pledge to plant 10,000 new street trees by 2015. These new trees will be planted by early 2014, adding to the 10,000 street trees already delivered during the Mayor's first term of office.

The Mayor has also announced £100,000 of grants for community tree projects. Last year this scheme supported projects across 16 boroughs involving 750 volunteers helping to plant 2,500 more trees. Among the projects were initiatives to plant trees in disused spaces on housing estates and funding for woodland activities for children.

In addition the capital is holding the first ever ‘London Tree Week. Created by the Mayor’s RE:LEAF partnership, the week of events has been designed to get more Londoners involved in caring for their local trees and woodlands. Events include free tree health demonstrations in Hyde Park, training sessions on orchard planting, ancient tree trails and woodland walks. Trees outside the Garden Museum in Lambeth are even set to be ‘yarn bombed’ (a style of urban knitting street art).

City Hall is also set to host an exhibition on London’s native trees, with information on the tree planting programme for the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, as well as the annual RE:LEAF tree and woodland awards to celebrate tree planting and conservation in the capital.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “Maintaining London's trees and greenery is essential to preserve our status as the world's best big city to live, work and do business in. That is why I am funding programmes to plant thousands of new trees across the capital and want to encourage all Londoners to get involved in planting and caring for them."

Sir Harry Studholme, Chair of the Forestry Commission, said: “The first ever London Tree Week is a wonderful idea. Trees make a huge contribution to life in the city by keeping it cool, reducing flooding and making London one of the most beautiful cities in the world to work and live in. As well as caring for the trees we have we need to plant more so they can be enjoyed by future generations. London Tree week is a fantastic opportunity for people to get involved with a wide range of events that celebrate the trees and woodlands of London and the Forestry Commission is excited to be involved too.”

 

Notes to editors

London Tree Week Events and activities:

Week long activities (11-18 May)

∙ An exhibition at City Hall highlighting many of London’s great trees including the native Black Poplar, the History Trees of the Olympic Park

∙ Yarn bombing of a selection of trees outside the Garden Museum to bring them back into the public realm

∙ Walk or cycle the ancient trees of London using the Woodland Trust’s Ancient Tree Trail http://tinyurl.com/ct9e2gt

∙ Wildlife + Tree tour at the Isabella Plantation, Richmond. Onsite from 11am-5.30pm. Courtesy of RSPB London (excluding Sunday 12 May) http://tinyurl.com/cxb72no

∙ Walk in the woods events. Courtesy of The Tree Council http://www.treecouncil.org.uk/community-action/walk-in-the-woods

Saturday 11 May OPAL Nature are running free tree health events in Hyde Park @ 12, 2 & 4pm http://tinyurl.com/cc2ogev

Sunday 12 May FREE Woodland walk with Woodland Trust in Hainault Woods, Redbridge, 11-1pm http://tinyurl.com/cqvzjx5 OPAL Nature are running free tree health events in Hyde Park @ 12, 2 & 4pm http://tinyurl.com/cc2ogev

Tuesday 14 May FREE Woodland walk with @WoodlandTrust in Hainault Woods, Redbridge. 6-8pm http://tinyurl.com/cqvzjx5 Find your local woodland. http://tinyurl.com/bn79bwz

Wednesday 15 May RE:LEAF tree and woodland awards At City Hall (the awards are not open to public). Matthew Pencharz is presenting, alongside John Simpson (tbc). At the event the next phase of Street Tree funding and CSG will be announced. Wildlife + Tree tour at the Isabella Plantation, Richmond. Onsite from 11am-5.30pm. Courtesy of RSPB London (excluding Sunday 12 May) http://tinyurl.com/cxb72no

Thursday 16 May London Orchard Project ‘orchard leaders training’

- To find out more go to #LondonTreeWeek Street Trees

- The Mayor’s Street Tree Initiative, delivered in partnership with the Forestry Commission and Groundwork London, is open to all London boroughs and private landowners who own or manage public realm (including businesses, registered social landlords, etc). It is also open to civil society organisations and community groups working with or on behalf of boroughs and private landowners. For more information or to apply for a grant, from a total pot of £1.7m, under the street tree initiative visit:http://www.london.gov.uk/priorities/environment/greening-london/releaf-l...

- Funding for the next 5,000 street trees opens on 13th May 2013 RE:LEAF - The Mayor’s RE:LEAF partnership launched in January 2011 to create opportunities for Londoners, businesses and local communities to help protect London’s trees and increase London’s trees cover, helping to meet the Mayor’s target to increase tree canopy cover in the capital by five per cent by 2025. For more information on RE:LEAF partners visit: http://www.london.gov.uk/priorities/environment/greening-london/re-leaf

- RE:LEAF Community Grant Scheme - The RE:LEAF community grant scheme supports tree and woodland projects that have clear, tangible community benefits and local engagement. Grants of between £2,000 and £10,000, from a £300,000 pot, are available to any organisation or group representing the wider community. For more information or to apply for a grant under the scheme visit: http://www.london.gov.uk/priorities/environment/greening-london/releaf-l... - £100,000 funding round opens on 13th May 2013

- Community spirited volunteers were one of the highlights of summer 2012. The Mayor wants to drive even more Londoners to do something great for their city by joining Team London and volunteering in their local community. To search for opportunities or to sign up to receive updates of new volunteering opportunities go to www.london.gov.uk/teamlondon