Give the unique gift of a street tree this Christmas
Tuesday 23 November: This summer, Hillingdon Council was one of the first authorities in the capital to sign up to 'Trees for Streets' - a national initiative to increase street tree numbers and create greener communities.
As luck may have it, the best time of year for planting new trees - winter - coincides with the festive season, when people are increasingly looking for more unique gifts.
Planting a tree creates an enduring present, bringing joy for future generations, while providing pleasing greenery and a home for vital wildlife at the same time.
The not-for-profit initiative is being run by the national charity Trees for Cities.
Participating residents can request for a tree to be planted in their street by making an online sponsorship donation via the council's website.
Alternatively, residents can sponsor a 'celebration' tree, to be planted in one of the borough's parks or green spaces. All applications will be assessed by the council's team, and if approved will be planted this winter - which is the best time of year to do this.
Applications for this year's planting window need to be submitted before the closing date on Thursday 6 January. Applications after this date will be planted in winter 2022.
Cllr Eddie Lavery, Hillingdon Council's Cabinet Member for Environment, Housing and Regeneration, said: "A stunning cherry tree or young apple tree could be the perfect gift for a loved one, but something that will also be enjoyed by future generations of people across the borough.
"Trees for Streets is a fantastic way for us to add to the work we're already doing to address the climate emergency with the added benefit of keeping our streets pleasant to look at and welcoming for wildlife."
The scheme follows the work the council has already been doing in partnership with Trees for Cities to plant trees in green spaces, streets and schools, with more than 14,000 trees planted already in total this year. Their flowers and fruits provide foraging opportunities for a variety of insects and birds, while also helping clean the air, provide shade and shield homes from road noise.
Trees have also been proven to benefit mental health and general wellbeing.
For more information and to sponsor a tree visit www.hillingdon.gov.uk/sponsor-a-tree.