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Partnership in the community: Hundreds of trees planted by Askham Bryan College and PATT Foundation

Date: 17th March 2021

Thanks to the initiative created by The Conservation Volunteers as part of their national I Dig Trees Campaign (sponsored by OVO Energy), Askham Bryan College at Middlesbrough received 900 free young whip trees for planting at their location in Stewart Park.

With the help of a military veterans’ charity Plant a Tree Today (PATT) Foundation, a group of veterans will join students from the college on Wednesday (17 March 2021) to plant all the trees. The college provides study in Animal Management, Land and Wildlife, Foundation Learning and Equine studies at Stewart Park, Middlesbrough in addition to a full range of land-based and specialist subjects at its main campus in York and further locations including Wakefield, Newcastle and Saltaire.

Steve Bassford, Lecturer in Arboriculture at Askham Bryan College, says, “The young trees will achieve full growth with the right planning, care and protection.  It will result in improving the local environment by sustainably replacing old and damaged trees and providing shelter for the park’s wildlife.  The mass planting will also positively affect our local carbon footprint as the trees will produce a generous supply of oxygen and help remove harmful carbon emissions from the atmosphere. We are very grateful for this generous donation of trees and delighted our students will help plant them.”

Dr Andrew Steel, Founder and Director of the PATT Foundation, normally operates in Yorkshire and East Riding with his ‘Green Task Force’ and is now looking forward to carrying out work in Middlesbrough. He says, “We welcomed the chance for PATT Foundation to team up with Askham Bryan College and extend our efforts into the Northeast. Our veterans planting alongside students who share the same passion for woodland and conservation will be rewarding teamwork.  It will fulfil our aim to engage with activity that promotes health and well-being while contributing to the environmental preservation of the local community.”

Darren York, Chief Executive of The Conservation Volunteers, says, “This (I Dig Trees) is a fantastic opportunity for community groups to receive free packs of native trees for planting in response to the climate emergency. Our partnership with OVO Energy and their members has seen The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) plant and distribute over one million trees since 2015. This year, there are a further 370,000 native trees available. COVID-19 has seen many important conservation activities stopped or reduced this year, but there is no reason why trees can’t be planted safely in the great outdoors. If you'd like advice as to how to organise outdoor conservation projects in a Covid-secure way, you can also find helpful information on our website.”

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Askham Bryan College,
Askham Bryan,
YO23 3FR
01904 772277