UK Urban Tree Planting
In urban areas, WTT advocate indigenous and non indigenous deciduous and non deciduous trees be planted with indigenous deciduous being the first choice. Health and safety and minimising root damage by appropriate choice of species should however be the priority.
Tree planting in urban areas has suffered from decades of neglect and we aim to assist in revitalising a new impetus in achieving far greater tree planting in urban areas. We work with communities and local authorities to increase urban planting and to set targets to achieve year on year increases in the number of trees in a community.
Public Land & Parks
There should be greater scope for local communities to form groups to plant trees on public land, in parks, and land owned by clubs or other organisations. We partner Local Authorities and other organisations to bring pressure to bear and ensure there are policies in place to increase tree planting and to allow communities to participate.
Urban gardens are under threat. Where funds allow we will purchase pockets of land in urban areas to be used as urban gardens by local communities held in trust. Where land is donated this will be held in trust for future generations.
There should be far more tree planting in new developments including a more diverse and appropriate selection of native species; with a emphasis on native deciduous trees and both positioning and foundation construction being adequate to enable a wider variety of tree species.
We are campaigning for both national and local government planning directives to require greater emphasis on tree planting and landscaping in new developments.
Roadsides & Road Infrastructure
A great deal of barren or semi barren land is near roadsides and road infrastructure, but government bodies are often reluctant to plant and maintain these areas or allow local communities to do so. The Highways Agency is one example of a Government organisation that we believe actively seeks to keep roadsides and reservations with the minimum of planting in order to minimise maintenance.
New roads and infrastructure is often woefully under landscaped. Agencies responsible for such projects frequently argue that trees can be more hazardous to injury and death than open verges or barriers if a vehicle is involved in a collision, but there are a range of alternatives including hedgerows that can be planted in areas where this is a likely hazard. We assist communities in working with these bodies in order to arrive at a framework agreement to encourage such agencies to apply greater resources to landscaping and to enable communities to enhance land in their locality whilst giving due consideration to health and safety.
Local authorities are frequently removing trees in pavements or by roadways in urban areas and not re-planting those that may have been diseased or removed. This is often due to concerns as to the risk of claims from heave or root damage to nearby buildings, the hazards from leaves on pavements in Autumn or the impact on pavement and roadways from roots. All too often such steps are overcautious at best.
We undertake research relating to urban planting for both bio diversity and safety and assist communities in promoting tree planting in urban landscapes and by roadways.