More people across Chichester District will have the opportunity to plant trees when a second round of applications for the subsidised tree scheme opens next month.
The council’s Tree Chichester District scheme has already seen 12,118 trees planted across the district since it was launched in January 2021. The subsidised tree scheme aims to expand on this work by helping residents, landowners, farmers, community groups, schools, businesses, and charities, to access 12,000 trees to plant in their communities later this year.
Applications for the scheme will open on 7 November and close on 9 December, or when all available trees have been allocated.
The initiative is funded by HM Treasury’s Shared Outcomes Fund and aims to test different ways to increase tree cover in rural and urban areas. The funding this year will cover 50% of the cost of the trees applied for, with applicants contributing the remaining 50%.
“We’ve seen a good response so far to the subsidised tree scheme and now we are giving even more people the opportunity to help us increase tree planting across the district,” says Councillor Penny Plant, Cabinet Member for Environment and Chichester Contract Services at Chichester District Council. “By planting trees you are helping to create a lasting legacy by improving biodiversity and helping to reduce air pollution, as well as adding more visual interest to the area.”
To apply for the scheme, applicants will need to ensure that they have the space available to plant the trees, the site is suitable for planting, and that they have someone responsible for planting and maintaining them. The trees can be planted on an applicant’s own land, or on land owned by someone else, as long as they have the landowner’s permission.
The trees will be supplied in bundles of 10, 20 or 25, but not as individual trees. Different trees suit different conditions, and the council has specially selected bundles of trees tailored to specific areas and soil type.
The cost to the applicant ranges from £13.71 to £22.47 per bundle, depending on the types of trees needed. Applicants are also able to purchase biodegradable guards and stakes, also subsidised at 50%, to help protect the trees. More detailed costings and information about the trees that are available, as well as a step-by-step guide to applying, can be found in our guidance notes at www.chichester.gov.uk/treescheme
Although it is not possible to apply for individual trees through this scheme, people can apply as part of a residents’ association or group of neighbours and divide the bundle of trees between different sites. The council’s dedicated Tree Project Officer can also provide guidance on accessing funding and sourcing trees through a range of organisations that may be suitable for smaller projects.
The Tree Chichester District scheme has already supported 115 tree planting projects across the district. These include three mini urban forests planted in Chichester, Midhurst and Selsey and working with landowners and farmers to help them plant trees on their land.
Penny adds: “The scheme is a key part of our work to protect and enhance our local environment and is an integral part of our Climate Emergency Action Plan, which you can find out more about at: www.chichester.gov.uk/climatechange.
“While increasing tree cover is important, we would also encourage people to protect and nurture existing mature trees that are safe and healthy. Trees are a precious natural asset and, as a natural carbon sink, are a vital part of the fight against climate change.”
Applications for the subsidised tree scheme will open on Monday 7 November at www.chichester.gov.uk/treescheme
All applications will be assessed to ensure they meet the criteria, which is designed to ensure the trees thrive, and trees will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Applications will close on Friday 9 December, or when all the available trees have been allocated.
People can find more information about the scheme, along with guidance notes, at www.chichester.gov.uk/treescheme. People can also contact the council’s dedicated Tree Project Officer by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 01243 521161.