13 October 2021 – 1,500 trees have been planted on the iconic Bath skyline within the World Heritage Site, thanks to the hard work of Bath & North East Somerset Council, Trees for Climate funding from the Forest of Avon Trust and the volunteers from Grow for Life – a charity engaging local people to build life skills.
Benefits to local residents in doing the planting, benefits to come from the trees as they grow.
Good things happen when we work together…
The local community pulled together to plant the trees and will enjoy seeing them grow for years to come, with the new local woodland, bringing benefits of biodiversity, carbon sequestration and shelter.
Summary of the project
In 2020, the Forest of Avon Trust partnered with Bath and North East Somerset Council to find and fund areas for tree planting. The council is very proactive about action to mitigate the climate and ecological emergencies and is seeking to plant 100,000 trees by May 2023.
A very special iconic site saw the planting of 1,500 native broadleaf trees to create biodiversity rich edges to a large area of well used playing fields, providing public benefit, carbon sequestration and shelter.
On the north side of the city of Bath, the Lansdown Plateau lies within the setting of the World Heritage Site and also the Cotswolds National Landscape. Whilst the plateau is typically open, many areas of the plateau have edges formed by woodland on the upper slopes and skyline edge.
This planting of a large belt of trees continues that theme and also screens adjacent sites such as car park lighting and some car glare.
The Cotswolds National Landscape are partners in the Bathscape project and this planting continues the ethos of the project to conserve, manage and enhance the landscapes around Bath within the setting of the World Heritage Site. The planting also fits into the Forest of Avon Plan: A Tree and Woodland Strategy for the West of England.
The trees planted are a native broadleaf mix of beech and sycamore for the larger canopy and field maple, elder, hawthorn, hazel, goat willow, yew and holly.
Bath’s topography is a city surrounded by hills, it is renowned for wooded hillsides which emphasise the city being nestled within the countryside. Bath & NES area has wet oak woodlands and shallow soiled beech woodlands and these trees will reinforce the beech woodlands across the Cotswold Range in keeping with the local character.
The trees will screen car park glare and night lighting and provide shelter to the playing fields, better protecting the pitches from wind and bad weather.
This planting increases biodiversity within the edge habitats, providing more resting places for our birds of prey as they hunt across the escarpment, as well as homes for insects and mammals.
Contribution to Net Zero:
The 1,500 trees planted contribute to the council’s 100,000 new trees target and the net zero targets.
Engagement, health and wellbeing:
Volunteers from Grow for Life benefitted from tree planting, have learnt valuable skills and feel more a part of their community and able to help improve their environment.