Coventry Tree Warden Network Annual Report 2021-2022

Despite Covid, we have had an interesting year, but with rather more sitting listening than being out and about.

We did manage to obtain one grant from the Tree Council from a fund that was closing just 2 days after a local resident asked us to help plant some trees on the Everdon Estate in Holbrooks. Smiths Nursery at Baginton found us the 40 trees, Tudor Environmental provided the accessories and local people, councillors, our MP and the Lord Mayor all helped us plant them in March. The residents have managed to water them and keep them alive all summer.
We registered the trees as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy.

We continued to sit in on online training sessions with the Birmingham Tree People and some amazingly interesting webinars with the Arboricultural Association. The one benefit of Covid has been the connectivity. We’ve enjoyed lectures from tree experts and enthusiasts from literally all over the world that we would never have got to listen to without Zoom.

Thanks to a City of Culture event, some of us were excited to meet fungi expert Merlin Sheldrake.

The Kingsway Gardens/orchard project has been progressing, with an active group of wardens and local residents continuing to improve the site. Next year it is hoped it will be ready to open up to visitors, especially schools for some ‘forest’ learning.

We have continued to forge links with both our universities. We attended a really interesting open day with Cov Uni at Ryton, where they told us about all their interesting tree related projects.
We are also involved with their plans for setting up a local tree nursery.

We have continued to monitor planning applications and to challenge the loss or potential loss of large numbers of trees on development sites and especially in our urban woodlands.

We resumed our outdoor activities in May with the annual bluebell walk and moth night in Piles Coppice and have done various other interesting walks since. We managed to meet for a fascinating talk about how climate change is affecting moths with our local expert David Brown and again for a lovely film about local trees and their wildlife with Simon Watts of Wild-presentations, but sadly no outings this year.

Last month, we received £1,000 as a Cauldron Foods Community Champion and we finally had our first get-together back in the Memorial Park with our friends from the other local Networks to make plans for next year. We are looking forward to it.

Ann Wilson (Vice Chair Coventry Tree Warden Network) Nov 2022.