Weston tree and plant group has been running since March 2022, aims to bring together as many people, groups, organisations and businesses involved and interested in planting trees and other plants to increase tree canopy levels and biodiversity across the town.
Working alongside North Somerset Council and Weston Town Council the group has gained momentum rapidly and is now creating a sub-committee to work directly with North Somerset Council’s tree officer to have a say and support the creation tree lined streets and urban areas.
The Office for National Statistics had conducted a study which showed that “the removal of pollution by trees, plants and grass saved 27,000 life years and the NHS around £1billion in medical costs” in 2020 alone.
In addition, a new tree nursery is being developed at a site in the Maltlands area of the Winterstoke ward. Assisted by Weston Town Council, community members are currently working with North Somerset Council to transform the disused space next to Maltlands Play Area into a community tree nursery for Weston-super-Mare.
The new tree nursey is called ‘WeSEE Trees’ which gives a nod to SEE MONSTER Think Tanks where the original tree and plant group community was formed. It is anticipated that this will become a thriving community-led space to grow and nurture trees for planting in the future, as tree nursery has the potential to become invaluable to the town’s planting commitments and enable rare native species to be grown locally. The trees grown could be used to create woodlands, hedgerows and orchards or they can be planted in dedicated green space such as local parks, school grounds, private farmland, community gardens and private household gardens.
Mark Canniford, Executive Member for Placemaking and Growth at North Somerset Council, said: “The Think Tank groups originally formed through SEE MONSTER played a huge part in the Monster and the positive affect it had on our local community. Trees soften the street scene, providing shelter, reducing wind speed and offering shade in the summer, have a cooling effect on the surrounding air. They’re a vital part of our future and it’s fantastic to see the good work continue with WeSEE Trees, as we build on the legacy SEE MONSTER has left.”
Partnerships have already been made with groups such as Friends of Grove Park, Keepers Gate Forest School and Osprey Outdoors to help establish the site, gain volunteers, share skills and collaborate with wider community initiatives.
All of this comes at the same time as SEE MONSTER trees and plants have found a new home. The Maple trees are now planted in Clarence Park and the development of a garden with over 1,000 plants and shrubs is taking place at the end of the beach lawns.
If you would like to get involved with Weston tree and plant group, the tree planting sub-committee or WeSEE Trees nursery please head to www.wsmtrees.co.uk. The next meeting is 18th January 2023 7:00 pm at Weston Museum.