Great Portland Street tree planting scheme launched

Phase 3 of the W1W Tree Planting Initiative was launched at the Iberica Restaurant, Great Portland Street on Monday, 21st September 2009. Over 50 guests attended the launch, including local residents and members of the local business community, representatives from the Marylebone Association, Councillor Harvey Marshall and Paul Akers of Westminster City Council, together with observers from Great Portland Estates and the Howard de Walden Estate.

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Sally Tooth, Honorary Secretary of Westminster Tree Trust, addresses guests at the Great Portland Street Tree Planting Launch

Tree planting at Churchill Gardens Community Primary School sponsored by Bastows

Children, staff and governors of Churchill Gardens Community Primary School with Trustees of Westminster Tree Trust and staff from Bastows. Bastows are a family run property restoration company who have sponsored 4 trees at the school – birch, cherry, crab apple and rowan – specially selected for the children.

Churchill Gardens Community Primary School

Planting ceremony marks the first phase of W1W Planting Initiative

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Matthew Wright of Channel 5 Television plants a tree in Hallam Street, London, W1, in the presence of the Deputy Lord Mayor of Westminster to mark phase 1 of the initiative.

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Matthew Wright with children from the International Community School, Marylebone

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Well wishers from the W1W community – residents and businesses – join Matthew Wright, The Deputy Lord Mayor of Westminster, Councillor Alan Bradley, with other representatives of the City of Westminster, and Trustees of Westminster Tree Trust, at a tree planting ceremony to mark the Hallam Street project. Councillor Bradley is a Trustee of Westminster Tree Trust

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Plaque in Hallam Street unveiled by the Deputy Lord Mayor

Tree planting commemorates Silver Jubilee of Westminster Tree Trust

On 21st November 2007,  a Whitebeam tree was planted at Violet Hill Gardens, NW8 to mark the silver jubilee of Westminster Tree Trust. The ceremonial planting was carried out by Lord Forsyth of Drumlean, founder Chairman of the Trust, in the presence of The Lord Mayor, and included the unveiling of a plaque to mark the Silver Jubilee. Dame Simone Prendergast, a founder Trustee, was also present.

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Silver Jubilee reception

On 14th March 2007, The Lord Mayor of Westminster, Councillor Carolyn Keen, hosted a reception in the The Lord Mayor’s Parlour, the guest speaker being The Rt. Hon. The Lord Forsyth of Drumlean, Founder Chairman of the Trust.

14 March 2007Westminster Tree Trust Silver Jubilee Party Lord Forsyth, Founder Chairman (centre) addresses the guests

The Bi-centenary of the Battle of Trafalgar

21Oct2005-121Oct2005-2To mark the Bi-centenary of the Battle Of Trafalgar, Westminster Tree Trust commissioned the planting of an English oak in Whitehall, opposite the Old Admiralty building, where Nelson’s body lay in State on its return to England.

A ceremonial tree planting, including the unveiling of a commemorative plaque, took place on the day of the bi-centenary – 21st October 2005. Two direct descendents of Nelson were present, Mrs. Anna Horatia Tribe, great great great granddaughter, who planted the tree, and her daughter Mrs. Mary Horatia Arthur.

The plaque reads: “This English oak was planted on 21st October 2005 by Mrs. Anna Horatia Tribe, great great great granddaughter of Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson (1758-1805), to commemorate the Bi-centenary of the Battle Of Trafalgar.”

Soho Tree Planting

The Trust took the view that Soho, characterised by traffic, crowds and narrow streets, would benefit from tree planting. So to mark its twentieth year, some 32 street trees were planted, including Chanticleer Pears, Maidenhair trees, Chinese Privets and others. The local residents’ association was enthusiastic and appreciative, and Rory Bremner planted one of the trees in a ceremony in Noel Street on St. George’s Day. The project was made possible by a generous grant from the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation. A further 16 street trees in Soho were sponsored by Shaftesbury Plc.

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Rory Bremner delights his audience at the Soho tree planting

Running for Trees

Twenty year old Alexander Scott took on the 2003 London Marathon in aid of the Westminster Tree Trust. Alexander had never enjoyed running as a child, so it was with surprise that his parents and friends greeted the news that he wanted to run 26.2 miles – but run it he did, and impressively. He trained hard while working for his management degree at St. Andrew’s University, and made full use of ‘that famous beach’ where Chariots of Fire was so inspirationally shot!

Alexander ScottAlexander completed the course in just under five hours, raising more than six and a half thousand pounds for Westminster Tree Trust.

“After months of training up at St Andrews, sometimes on bitterly cold and stormy nights, occasionally feeling I had bitten off more than I could chew, the day itself seemed to creep up upon me quicker than I had expected. I finished all 26.2 miles in the respectable time of 4 hours 56 minutes, quite surprising myself. All the way round there were hundreds of spectators cheering all the runners on, giving the run a wonderful carnival atmosphere. Crossing the finishing line was one of my truly great experiences and is something I will never forget.”

Anniversary of September 11th

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The American Ambassador assists with a commemorative tree planting to mark the anniversary of September 11th

September 11th, 2002, saw the anniversary of the tragic events in America a year before. The Trustees decided to mark the anniversary with a gesture of sympathy and friendship towards the citizens of the USA. Two trees were planted near the American Embassy in Grosvenor Square, together with a commemorative plaque, which reads:

“North American Sweet Gum Trees donated by the citizens of Westminster in memory of those lives lost on 11th September 2001 at the World Trade Centre, New York, USA, and as a token of friendship between our respective nations.”

The US Ambassador, William S. Farish, planted one tree and The Lord Mayor of Westminster, Councillor Frances Blois, the second.