Schoolchildren, local green spaces staff, councillors and volunteers got involved with a tree planting at the aptly named Coronation Park (next to All Saints Church, Babbacombe), as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee ‘Green Canopy’ celebrations, while a tree was also planted as part of Torbay’s wider COVID Memorial Tree Trail.

Children from All Saints Church of England Primary School in Babbacombe helped with the planting of the trees along with staff from Hi-Line and SWISCo and Torbay Council, Father Paul Jones and local Tree Warden volunteers. The project also forms part of Devon Wildlife Trust’s Saving Devon’s Treescapes Project, while a second tree was also planted as part of the COVID Memorial Tree Trail, led by Torbay Greenspace Forum and working with SWISCo and Torbay Council.

Steve Darling, Leader of Torbay Council said: “It was wonderful to see the local community taking part in the tree planting at Babbacombe and it’s so important for children to get involved in protecting their environment from an early age – the next generation is key to helping us to tackle climate change.”

“Torbay Council is committed to making Torbay carbon neutral by 2030, working with partners through the Torbay Climate Partnership, and we recently launched our new Carbon Neutral Action Plan.

“Planting more trees is a key element to addressing climate change – trees absorb and store carbon, improve local air quality and also help reduce flood risk. We are working with our local Tree Warden volunteers to prioritise the areas of the Bay for future planting.”

Richard Nutbeam, Headteacher of All Saints Church of England Primary School said: “Trees - the lungs of the world. The message about the importance of trees for our future has been delivered by Devon Wildlife Trust to our entire school today in a fun and engaging way. Jaz from Devon Wildlife trust was blown away with the children's knowledge during her presentation.

“The year 6 children have really enjoyed being part of this experience planting 2 beautiful trees. Not only have they learnt more about trees, but they've been able to be involved in something that will live on and allow them to revisit in the following years and generations. Thank you to all those involved in providing this wonderful experience for the children.”

Father Paul Jones from All Saints Church, said: “What a privilege it is to be able to plant these trees in Coronation Park – both to commemorate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, and to remember those who have lost someone during the pandemic, and it was lovely to get the local schoolchildren involved. We hope everyone in Babbacombe will be able to enjoy these trees for generations to come.”

Jasmine from Saving Devon’s Treescapes said: “It was great to meet all the kids at the tree planting and talk to them about why trees are so essential. Saving Devon’s Treescapes started in March 2020 and over five years we aim to plant and nurture 250,000 trees outside of woodlands across Devon. Not only that but we want increase knowledge about the importance of our treescapes and ensure the cultural importance of ash trees is celebrated and not forgotten.”

About the Queen’s Green Canopy

Everyone across the UK is being invited to plant trees from October 2021, when the tree planting season begins, through to the end of the Jubilee year in 2022

The Queen's Green Canopy will create a network of individual trees, avenues, copses and whole woodlands in honour of The Queen's service and the legacy she has built.

About the COVID Memorial Tree Trail

The COVID Memorial Tree Trail has been led by the local community via the Torbay Greenspace Forum, working in partnership with Torbay Council, SWISCo, and Hi-Line. The trees are being planted by staff from Hi-Line, with support from local Tree Warden volunteers. There are also trees being planted in other community sites such as churchyards and NHS sites.

Trees planted across Torbay to remember all who have suffered and those we have lost to COVID.

About the Tree Warden scheme

There are currently 80 Tree Warden volunteers across Torbay and so far they have got involved with a range of projects from helping with tree planting at a local football club, assisting with the COVID Memorial Tree Trail to helping with the i-Tree survey to measure tree canopy cover in Torbay and helping to plot out where they would like to see more trees planted in the Bay.

Tree Wardens plant, protect and promote their local trees. No training or experience in tree management is needed – just a love of trees and a few hours to spare. If you are interested you can find out more about becoming a Tree Warden.  

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