Do you want to befriend your favourite local trees?

There’s a new organisation being established in Surrey Heath with the aim of keeping a friendly watch over trees in our borough, through a network of volunteer tree wardens.

Thought a photo of a tree might be useful here, this one is by the club house of Sunningdale golf Club. Click on image to enlarge.

You can find more about this new group on the Surrey Heath Tree Wardens Facebook page. I’m not too knowledgeable about Facebook, so, as it’s a closed group, think you might need to request to join. They’ve also a website HERE.

I received this invitation from Trefor Hogg, one of the founders, to attend their inaugural AGM.

How are these oak trees related?

A gorgeous autumn heathland walk today from Lightwater to Deepcut. Hardly a soul to be encountered on the heathland track bordering the Bisley and Pirbright Ranges.

The soon to be constituted Surrey Heath Tree Wardens charity got me thinking about trees on my walk. I took photos of a number. I don’t really know why, cos we’ve got so many in Surrey Heath. Maybe it was because of the light.

Anyway, to show my complete botanical ignorance, I ask the following question. In my photo of two oak trees, are they brothers? A likely absurd question, or, maybe they’re offspring of a parent. If they are, what do you call them? Now, look it’s Friday, and I did have a nice late lunch at Miller & Carter in Bagshot.

Told it was coming, but sad to see it happen

I read a report, not sure where, that the tree at the corner of Knoll Road and St George’s Road in Camberley had died and would need to be felled.

I passed by today, at midday, to witness tree surgeons felling the tree.

Shame, the tree had been there for many years. Funnily, while it was so prominent I’ve no direct photo of it, other than in the background of the 2008 Freedom Parade.

Frimley Business Association wins ‘Britain in Bloom’ Silver Award

Surrey Heath Borough Council announced on 3rd October 2017,

Frimley Business Association is celebrating after winning a silver medal in the Britain in Bloom competition. Their competition entry was made in memory of Kevin Cantlon, Surrey Heath Borough Council’s Economic Development Officer, who sadly died in April 2017. Kevin was always very supportive of Frimley’s local businesses.

The Frimley Business Association wanted to do something positive in Kevin’s memory.  The project was supported by Surrey County Council’s Improvement Plan which provided a grant for Frimley’s greening project.

This award is even more impressive as this was the first year that Frimley Business Association had entered ‘Britain in Bloom’. A lot of hard work from the whole community went into ensuring Frimley is full of colourful hanging baskets, green planters and beautiful flower beds.

Sarah Jane Croke, from Wedding & Event Services at The Pottery, was instrumental in leading the project. She said: “I am thrilled to bits and over the moon with this award which is a very fitting tribute for Kevin and the support he showed to businesses in Frimley.  We can now get our new signs for Frimley which will include The Britain in Bloom logo.”

Natalie Cantlon, Kevin’s wife and a member of staff at SHBC said; “This was a lovely tribute to Kevin and I’m so thrilled they have won this award – it is well deserved!”

The awards are judged around the three core pillars of Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Britain in Bloom’s criteria:

  • Horticultural Achievement
  • Environmental Responsibility
  • Community Participation

The RHS also states that local Bloom campaigns should consider the entire community, not just the high street or village square and the planting activities should also be sustainable and benefit the community in the long term.

The judging of the Frimley entry took place on 12 July, with the results announced on 21 September.

Lightwater Country Park achieves ‘Favourable’ assessment from Natural England

Surrey Heath Borough Council announce that,

Lightwater Country Park has achieved the highest rating from Natural England for the condition of its ecologically important habitat.

The area of heathland within the Country Park has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The Country Park is therefore an area of high nature conservation value, protected by law.

In the most recent assessment by public body Natural England (NE), the habitat management of Lightwater Country Park by Surrey Heath Borough Council has been praised. The report, following NE’s visit in August 2017, said: “The diversity and quality of habitat management actions being undertaken is excellent, and is maintaining and enhancing the heath land habitat.

“It is a result of this diligent stewardship of the Country Park/SSSI site that habitat conditions have improved to bring the site into favourable condition and this is to the credit of Surrey Heath Borough Council.”

The ‘strategic and sensitive signage”, active visitor management, use of goats to control invasive trees and scrub, and abundance of heathland birds such as the Dartford warbler are all commended in the report.

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Visiting the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

A couple of weeks ago we visited the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew.

Within its over 320 acres there’s plenty to see and experience. We managed just a part. It’s one of 31 world heritage sites in the UK. The variety of trees and plants is amazing.

Memorable things in our visit were the Palm House, Treetops Walkway, Rock Gardens, and Kew Palace. Opening the door into the Palm House one is assailed by heat and humidity, and when climbing the steps to the elevated walkway the heat and humidity rises. From the elevated walkway lets you appreciate the structure of the building, and its age, having been built in the 1840’s.

The Treetop Walkway is a fun way to study trees from above. There’s a lift for those not wanting to climb the 108 steps. Kew Palace, also known as the Dutch House, provides an unexpected insight in building techniques and practices of the 1600 and 1700 hundreds. A visit of varied attractions, as my photo montage shows,

Interested in trees – come along to the inaugural meeting of Surrey Heath Tree Wardens

Two Camberley residents, Trefor Hogg and Jerry Brownlee, are instigating a tree warden scheme for Surrey Heath, in conjunction the the Borough Council’s Arboricultural Officer.

They’re looking for tree wardens and helpers in every ward and village in Surrey Heath. I’m told that there are two volunteers in West End, in addition to Trefor and Jerry.

There’s an existing Surrey Tree Wardens Network, with Trefor and Jerry looking to establish the Surrey Heath element. Trefor says,

We will be holding our first full meeting on 25th September 7:00 pm, in the Olive Room, The Link Building, St John the Baptist Church, Church Road, Windlesham GU20 6BL.

This is early notification of the meeting, an agenda will be published on Facebook shortly. If you’re interested to helping lease let or know if you’re intending to attend.

Always good to be in at the beginning. Trefor’s Facebook Page is HERE.

Fact: Surrey Heath is the greenest Borough and has the highest tree cover in Britain at 40.6%.

Here are a couple of interesting photos of trees in the borough, one of Phillyrea latifolia by Bagshot Station, and another of an unusually shaped Scots Pine in Lightwater Country Park.