A district-wide tree planting drive to help tackle climate change is set to begin next month in Wallingford.

South Oxfordshire District Council has just granted an application from Friends of Wallingford and Cholsey Green Spaces to plant trees at Radnor Road and Wilding Road.

The applications are the first to be approved following the launch of the council’s new tree planting policy, which outlines how it will support local tree planting initiatives as well as how it will protect, plant and manage trees on council land.

The Friends will plant approximately 45 trees at Radnor Road, including a community orchard and walnut, sweet chestnut, oak, rowan and hawthorn trees, while a new community orchard on Wilding Road will feature ten apple and plum trees; a hornbeam, oak, field and horse chestnut; and a new hedgerow.

Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere so this work will play an important role in helping to reduce local emissions.

District councillors are now urging more groups to come forward with proposals for planting trees on council land across the district – for more information visit southoxon.gov.uk/trees

Cllr Ian Snowdon, Tree Champion at South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “I’m delighted that we have approved the Friends’ application to plant trees in Wallingford.  This marks the first step to increasing our tree cover in South Oxfordshire to help reduce local carbon emissions and enhance the natural environment.  It’s vital that all our communities play their part, and we now want to see many more groups come forward with tree planting projects across the district.”

Cllr Peter Dragonetti, Tree Champion at South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “Trees will play an extremely important role in helping us to reduce our carbon emissions and ensuring the protection of natural habitats, so it’s vital that we increase planting across the district    They also provide great benefits for our health wellbeing and can improve the scenery for the local area, so I’m really looking forward to seeing more applications in the coming months.”

Cllr Sue Cooper, Cabinet Member for Environment, Climate Change and Nature Recovery, at South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “Tackling the climate emergency is a major priority for this council.  We are grateful to those who are planting and maintaining the trees and we will do what we can to encourage and increase tree planting across the district and to support our communities looking to take climate action.”

Vicki Baker, from Friends of Wallingford and Cholsey Green Spaces, said: “We’re looking forward to start improving these two green spaces for people and for wildlife.  The benefits of quality green spaces are wide ranging and well reported – we’re really excited to see these spaces begin to offer more to their neighbouring communities.”

Notes for editors:

Tackling the climate emergency is a major priority South Oxfordshire District Council which is aiming to become carbon neutral within its own operations by 2025.

The council’s new Climate Action Plan outlines the steps it will take to achieve this aim, as well as how it will support local efforts to tackle the climate emergency.  This includes identifying sites for new tree planting and wilding opportunities on council land or through partnership opportunities on privately owned land to support natural carbon capture.