People across the UK are to be invited to plant a tree for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, to help mark the monarch’s 70-year reign.
The tree-planting campaign, known as The Queen’s Green Canopy, will launch next year ahead of the milestone in 2022.
The initiative has been hailed as a “fitting way” to celebrate the Queen’s reign – the first time a British sovereign will have been on the throne for seven decades – through “striving to increase and protect our native tree cover which, for centuries, has played such a central role in the life of the nation”.
The project, led by the Cool Earth charity in partnership with the Government and The Woodland Trust, will see communities, charities and schools among others plant trees across the four nations of the UK, with an encouragement to plant healthy native trees likely to thrive in their environments.
During her reign the Queen has planted more than 1,500 trees all over the world and organisers of this campaign said the public are being encouraged to come together with the aim of “greening” their local and national environments as a “special gift” to the monarch.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “This difficult year has reminded us all of the importance of the nature and green spaces that surround us.
“Trees have the potential to transform our communities, connect us with nature and provide homes for precious wildlife.
“They also have a huge role to play in tackling climate change as we build back greener from the pandemic.
“As we celebrate Her Majesty’s incredible 70 years of service, I encourage everyone to get behind this scheme, and go ‘Plant a Tree for the Jubilee.’”
The announcement comes during National Tree Week – the UK’s largest annual tree celebration, marking the start of the winter tree-planting season.
Chairman of the Forestry Commission, Sir William Worsley said: “The value of trees has never been clearer and at a time where we must do everything we can to not only tackle climate change, but also adapt to its impacts, I would urge everyone to pick up a spade and plant a tree for the jubilee.”
Environmentalist and Cool Earth trustee, Tony Juniper said: “Expanding tree cover is key to the recovery of the world’s natural environment, including here in Britain.
“Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee marks an excellent opportunity to harness Cool Earth’s expertise to help do that job.”
Dr Darren Moorcroft of the The Woodland Trust, said: “There is no more fitting way to celebrate Her Majesty’s Jubilee than through striving to increase and protect our native tree cover which, for centuries, has played such a central role in the life of the nation.
“This is both about caring for and expanding our natural heritage and safeguarding its future for our children in the face of a combined climate and nature crisis.”
Cool Earth said more details about the initiative and how to get involved will be announced “in due course”.