The forest at Moseley Road Open Space in Bilston has been planted thanks to a partnership between City of Wolverhampton Council, Earthwatch Europe, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) Green Recovery Challenge Fund and MINI Electric.
Planting got underway today (Monday 29 November) with trees dug in by pupils from Moseley Park, city councillors, members of the local community and MINI UK staff.
The Tiny Forest, made up of 600 densely planted native trees covering a space the size of a tennis court, will offer a place for school pupils and the wider community to explore and learn in the local area.
It is the second Tiny Forest in Wolverhampton, after the city become the first in the Black Country to launch a similar scheme at Oak Street Open Space in Merridale this March.
The planting will also form part of the national Queen’s Green Canopy scheme, a UK wide tree planting initiative to mark The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee which take place next year.
The initiative at Moseley Road Open Space is led by Earthwatch Europe, and funded by Defra under its Green Recovery Challenge Fund which supports projects aimed at restoring nature and tackling climate change. After planting, community activity and research at the forest will continue to be supported by MINI Electric.
Earthwatch is pioneering Tiny Forests across the country, connecting schools and communities with nature. The environmental charity will work with local residents and school pupils to monitor the forest and collect data on carbon absorption, flood mitigation, thermal comfort and biodiversity, as well as assessing the social and wellbeing benefits.
Bilston’s Tiny Forest supports City of Wolverhampton Council’s Tree and Woodland Strategy and Open Space Strategy, as well as forming part of the response to its Climate Emergency declaration made in July 2019.
Councillor Steve Evans, City of Wolverhampton Council’s cabinet member for city environment and climate change, said: “It’s great news that Wolverhampton is to become home to a second Tiny Forest.
“These small spaces of densely packed trees offer great benefits to the local area – both from an environmental and a well being point of view.
“As a city, we are committed to doing all we can to improve our environment for our residents and tree planting enables us to offer a greener and healthier future for generations to come.”
Councillor Linda Leach, cabinet member for Adults and Bilston North ward councillor, said: “We’re delighted that Moseley Road Open Space has become home to a Tiny Forest, offering a range of benefits for our local community.
“Tiny Forests are such an innovative way of encouraging local people, organisations and schools to get out into nature and discover the benefits of being in the open air.
“I have really enjoyed the planting day and would encourage any local residents to come and enjoy the forest and take part in the community monitoring opportunities.”
David George, Director, MINI UK & Ireland said “Creative use of space is at the heart of MINI, so the partnership between MINI Electric and Earthwatch Europe to plant Tiny Forests is a perfect fit. We’re really excited about how Tiny Forests can bring communities together and help educate on the important role biodiversity plays in sustainability.”