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415 Trees Planted at Beechwood as Part of the Queen’s Green Canopy Initiative

Pupils, staff and parents of Beechwood Park School in Hertfordshire were delighted to take part in the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative by planting in excess of 400 trees in the School grounds.

The Queen’s Green Canopy is a nationwide initiative created to mark HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.  Originally due to conclude in December, the end of the Jubilee year, the project is now continuing until March 2023, to include the full UK tree planting season which runs from October to March.

The mission for the Queen’s Green Canopy is to create a living legacy with over a million trees planted in Her Majesty’s name which will serve as a lasting tribute to Her Majesty’s extraordinary service to her country and her people.  There is an interactive map which  showcases the planting projects across the United Kingdom, giving people and organisations an opportunity to be part of this special legacy.

Through The Woodland Trust’s Free Trees for Schools and Communities scheme, Beechwood was the recipient of 415 hazel, cherry, silver birch, dogwood, hawthorn, oak and rowan saplings, to complement our existing woodland.  Under the stewardship of Forest School Leader Becky Le Bas, the Beechwood woodland is a much used and much loved resource, being used for weekly outdoor learning sessions for pre prep and prep school pupils, as well as the setting for other subject lessons such as Science, Music and Art. Cross-country running and boarding activities also take place in the woods providing a fantastic setting for both fitness and fun.

On Friday 18 November, the School community – pupils, staff and parents – came together to plant the saplings in designated areas of our woodland.  We were delighted to be joined by Dacorum’s Deputy Mayor Alan Johnson and his wife Anne, who got stuck in and helped our planting efforts.  They are pictured above with Head Ed Balfour, Forest School Lead Becky Le Bas and Head of School Aidan with Middle Department pupils Serena, Ellie and William.

Forest School Leader Becky Le Bas said “I am absolutely delighted to be a part of such a worthwhile project. Trees provide us with innumerable benefits from their environmental impact to the provision of wildlife habitats. Well-being is another enormous asset given to us by trees; I cannot underestimate how much both staff and pupils alike enjoy the positive impact when they are in the woods. I would like to say a truly heartfelt thank you to everyone who has helped to make this project possible from the parents, staff and pupils who planted the saplings to the people behind the scenes making the event run smoothly. I hope you all enjoy watching these trees flourish and grow whilst you remain a part of the current Beechwood community and as visitors in the future – please do come back and see them!”

Head Ed Balfour said “It was an honour both to welcome the Deputy Mayor and Mayoress, Mr. Alan and Mrs Ann Johnson to Beechwood last week to help the children plant the saplings, and to be part of this wonderful legacy project to commemorate the exemplary reign of our late Queen.  I am incredibly proud of our outstanding Outdoor Learning provision at Beechwood, and am immensely grateful to Mrs Le Bas for all the work that she has put into establishing a tree-planting culture at Beechwood for future generations of pupils.  With an indigenous deciduous tree as part of our name, we have always been, and will continue to be, committed to outdoor education and Forest School as a key aspect of our learning culture”.

Find out more about Forest School and Outdoor Learning at Beechwood Park here

Find out more about The Queen’s Green Canopy here