17 Feb 2020

Environment

Bristol wins share of Urban Tree Challenge Fund

New project will see trees planted on city streets.

Bristol has been awarded a share of £10 million from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and Forestry Commission in the first round of the Urban Tree Challenge Fund.

Green Street Community Planting, a joint initiative between Bristol City Council and North Somerset Council, is one of thirteen projects across the UK that was handed funding to plant new trees in their cities.

Over 500 street trees and 10 small woodlands (an additional 3,000 trees) will be planted as a result of the project  involving local communities in the selection of the trees, and encouraging volunteers to plant them and help with care and watering.

The announcement follows Bristol City Council’s announcement of an Ecological Emergency and furthers our ambitions set out in the One City Plan to doubling the tree canopy in the city by 2045.

Councillor Asher Craig, Deputy Mayor said: “Urban trees are vital in making our cities more liveable as we fight climate change and in connecting us with nature to boost health and wellbeing. Our commitment is to make our streets and communities greener to support wildlife and create a more nature friendly city.

“Trees will be planted in areas where the benefit to the community will be greatest and where the tree canopy count is currently low.”

Cllr Bridget Petty, North Somerset Council's executive member for climate emergency and the environment welcomed the news: “This will complement our ambitious plans to plant around 50,000 young trees across North Somerset over the next couple of years as part of our rewilding programme to help tackle the climate emergency.”

Jon Clark, Executive Director of the Forest of Avon Trust – a key partner on the project - said: “We are really pleased to be supporting the project. We will bring the vision to life demonstrating how trees will fit into the street scene and what the benefits of planting these trees will be to the community.  We’ll also talk to residents about how they can support the project and be involved with activities like tree watering.”

Community consultation will start in June and tree planting will start in December when the new planting season begins.