East Riding of Yorkshire Council has issued a reminder that grants of up to £5,000 are available as part of The East Riding of Yorkshire Community Tree Planting Fund, but only until 30 August, 2020, when this year's application window closes.
Grants are available to private and public landowners, and town and parish councils, as well as other community groups, in a bid to increase the number of native trees across the East Riding.
Over 40 applications are being considered at the moment.
One application is from Bubwith Parish Council - clerk Steve Young explains why they applied, and what for :
"Bubwith Parish Council is very conscious that we need to support our planet so it is fit for future generations; planting trees is a great way that the Parish Council can support the environment.
"The PC owns an allotment field that is only a third used for allotment plots; two dozen Christmas trees have already been planted in some of the spare space, so future generations have a ready supply for the "Christmas Tree on the Village Green" over the holiday period.
"The PC has thought for some time that a community orchard would be a good addition to the field and has floated the idea to the allotment holders, with a good response. The Community Tree planting grant came along at the right time and the PC has consulted with our local tree supplier, Henleys, who have been a great help in suggesting tree varieties.
"Initial thoughts have been that we will ask Bubwith Primary School to plan out the orchard and help with planting the trees; we are hopeful that each child might have a small plaque with their name to say that they helped plant a tree. The PC plans to plant various native fruit and nut trees, so one Parish Councillor has bought some cocoa plants to grow in his greenhouse, so we can produce a fruit and nut chocolate bar!!!
"We have a Parish Councillor skilled in tree planting and we hope to plant all of the trees voluntarily with allotment holders, villagers and schoolchildren digging holes to put them in.
"We have calculated that we can fit approximately 200 trees and with the provision of stakes and ties this will use up the maximum grant, should we be successful in receiving it."
The East Riding of Yorkshire Community Tree Planting Fund is looking to support projects that will include creating new areas of native woodland, planting new clusters of native trees and hedgerows or establishing new groups of individual native standard trees.
While there are no restrictions as to who can apply for the grants, which are administered by the council's planning department, applications could come from individuals or groups, private and public landowners, farmers and land managers, community groups, businesses, community organisations, charities, town and parish councils, schools and faith groups.
Applications can be for large or small scale projects based in either rural or urban locations and can be for a new developments or to expand and improve existing areas and that have benefits for the community.
To be eligible for the grants, applications should meet some, or all, of the following criteria:
The fund is not primarily aimed for projects in domestic settings, although applications may be considered in exceptional circumstances and if wider community benefits can be demonstrated.
There are 36 types of British native trees which people can choose from and these include alder, beech, silver birch, blackthorn, elder, hazel, holly, limes, field maple, oaks, rowan, willow and yew.
The project will complement the Northern Forest project which aims to plant 50 million trees across an area stretching from Liverpool to East Yorkshire over a 25 year period.
Since 2018, over 100,000 trees have been planted across the East Riding and Hull through the Northern Forest project.
Stephen Hunt, head of planning and development management, said: "The East Riding is well below the national average for tree coverage with around 2% of land classed as woodland.
"The aim of the fund is to encourage people such as businesses, community groups, private and public landowners to think about the space they have and consider a project to help increase the number of trees and shrubs across the East Riding."
Anyone who wishes to apply for a grant needs to register on the grants portal which can be found at https://eastridingofyorkshirecouncil.flexigrant.com or for further information email firstname.lastname@example.org
The closing date for applications is 30 August, 2020.
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