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Redgrave villagers set to plant 150 trees to tackle climate change

Suffolk villagers are about to plant 150 trees in an effort to tackle climate change – and hope thousands more will follow in years to come.

The idea was proposed by Redgrave tree warden John Preston, who came up with the idea after spotting that the Woodland Trust is providing communities across the country with free saplings.

“It suddenly occurred to me that we are removing more trees than we are planting,” said Mr Preston, 78.

Redgrave tree warden John Preston wants to see more trees planted in the village. Picture by Mark Bullimore.
Redgrave tree warden John Preston wants to see more trees planted in the village. Picture by Mark Bullimore.

“Our village doesn’t plant trees; very few have been planted since I’ve lived here and I think that’s going to have to change.”

Indigenous trees are to be planted on land in Fen Street, a former agricultural field which has not been used in more than 15 years.

“The vast majority of our trees in Redgrave are in people’s gardens,” said Mr Preston, who is a member of the Suffolk Wildlife Trust and the Royal Forestry Society.

“The trouble is that we are the least wooded country in Europe. If everybody plants a tree, it would be wonderful, because we would be doing our bit to remove Co2 from the atmosphere.”

Since the idea was proposed, more than 10 people have answered Mr Preston’s call for help and he hopes that more will follow.

He said: “In the long run, we hope that trees will start taking off. There’s a really important point that people don’t understand. When is the best time to plant a tree? Fifty years ago. But the second best time is now.”

Planting is due to take place in October or November and Mr Preston is hoping to involve local schoolchildren in the process.

The idea is that each child will have his or her name attached to a tree and could come back and use it for educational purposes.

“I’d love to think that, in the next few years we will be planting even more trees,” said Mr Preston. “I’d love to produce woods around our village, like in Kenninghall, where they planted 17,000 trees.

“We need to do it because, at the end of the day, it’s part of the answer to global warming.”

READ MORE: Rare plants receive helping hand

Anyone wanting to get involved should call Mr Preston on 01379 890974.

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