The proposed site for the English Centenary Wood in Langley Vale could see 200,000 trees planted

Millions of trees to be planted across the UK in First World War Centenary Woods project

Posted on on 11 March 2014
Share |

The Woodland Trust has launched its First World War Centenary Woods project, which will see millions of trees planted across the United Kingdom.

Four woods are set to be created in each of the UK's four constituent nations - England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. This will amount to over 1,000 acres of woodland being developed.

The £12 million project will see over 3 million free trees made available to schools, community groups and youth groups for planting.

The Woodland Trust is hoping that landowners and communities across the country will seek involvement in creating hundreds of new woods containing millions of trees.

                                                   The proposed site at Langley Vale

"Lasting legacy"

The Trust said that the new trees "will transform the landscape into rich, vibrant and flourishing woodland" and "will stand proud as a lasting legacy for those who fought, those who lost their lives, and also for their loved ones on the home front who supported them from afar".

The Woodland Trust has identified a 640 acre site near Epsom where it would like to create the English Centenary Wood. Bigger than the Olympic Park in Stratford, the site in Langley Vale will be able to support 200,000 trees

Sites in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales have also been identified, but no further details have been given at this point.

"Stand for hundreds of years"

The Woodland Trust's Project Director, Karl Mitchell, said that the project will "provide a lasting tribute to all those involved in the First World War", with the trees standing "for hundreds of years".

Mr. Mitchell also expressed the Trust's hope "to see many thousands of people getting involved by planting their own tribute or dedicating trees in memory of loved ones“.

The UK is one of the least wooded countries in Europe, with only 13% woodland cover compared to 44% across the rest of Europe.

                                                   The proposed site at Langley Vale

Mr. Mitchell highlighted that "at a time when our woodland cover is so low compared to other countries, planting trees now is more important than ever".

"As well as representing enormous strength and bravery shown by the nation during the First World War, the trees that are planted during the course of the project will help strengthen our natural landscape, increasing its resilience to the threats posed by pests and diseases”.

Source: Woodland Trust press release

Date of press release publication: 11/03/2014

Images courtesy of the Woodland Trust

Posted by: Daniel Barry, Centenary News