West Yorkshire falls below the national average when it comes to tree cover so local youngsters and community groups are taking action by getting their hands dirty and planting thousands of trees.
A total of 3,500 tree packs will be delivered to schools and community groups throughout the UK as part of the Woodland Trust’s Free Trees scheme, sponsored by Sainsbury’s, IKEA, Yorkshire Tea and People’s Postcode Lottery.
The Whinney Hill Tenants Group in Brighouse and Friends of Judy Woods in Wyke are two of the groups to benefit from the scheme.
West Yorkshire has just 7.9 per cent tree cover compared to the national average of 13 per cent.
Some groups have chosen to plant their trees to commemorate the centenary of the First World War, chiming with the charity’s own ambitions to create four large centenary woods for the public’s use by 2018 - 100 years since the end of the conflict.
John Tucker, the Woodland Trust’s Woodland Creation Director, said: “It is wonderful to see the enthusiasm for the Woodland Trust’s free tree packs. It takes just ten years for trees to grow well above head-height, so communities could be enjoying the rewards sooner than you’d think, as well as creating a lasting, living legacy for future generations.
“Currently the UK has significantly less woodland cover than the rest of Europe. Communities’ efforts to plant in their own localities to benefit the people who live there is admirable and helps us work toward our target of doubling native woodland cover.”