National Tree Week was marked in Northumberland by the planting of new trees in a number of locations across the county.

In Stocksfield, a healthy young Silver Birch tree was planted in Birkdene, replacing an old Rowan which had to be removed due to root decay disease.

The tree was planted by County Councillor Anne Dale along with a number of local residents – including Pauline Dawson, who lives very close to the site, and has been a driving force behind replacing the tree.

Anne said:  “A tree was sadly lost on this attractive piece of open space due to disease, and Pauline and the local residents have been very keen to see a replacement.  I have been working with the council’s local services team to secure a nice new healthy tree to plant here.

“It was great to have so many of the local community along to help with the planting and to celebrate the value of trees to our local areas.”

National Tree Week is the UK’s biggest annual festival of trees and ran from 26th November to 4th December.  It provides communities with the impetus to take action by planting the trees of the future and attempting to change attitudes for future generations.

Each year, the festival inspires around a quarter of a million people to get their hands dirty and plant up to one million trees. This year was no exception, and tree planting events took place around the country, organised by The Tree Council’s member organisations, which include voluntary bodies and local authorities, as well as a network of 8,000 tree warden volunteers, schools, community groups and others.

Northumberland County Council has a programme of management for trees in public places right across the county – whereby trees are looked after to make sure that they can thrive, and their health regularly checked.  In cases where old and diseased trees have to be removed, new ones are planted to replace them, in locations such as this at Birkdene.

Cllr Ian Swithenbank, cabinet member for local services at Northumberland County Council said:  “It is very good to see communities like this one at Stocksfield coming together to mark National Tree Week.  The Tree Council does a great job in encouraging individuals, communities and families across the UK to change their views about the value and significance of trees in their lives, and in Northumberland we do our bit to do the same.”

For those who didn’t have the opportunity to plant a tree last week, there are plenty of other ways to get involved in National Tree Week. People can celebrate trees by contributing a tree story or memory towards the Charter for Trees, Woods and People, which launches in a year’s time in November 2017.  Find out more at www.treecouncil.org.uk