Treemendous efforts put into Mid & East Antrim Tree Week events

Kilcreggan volunteers working at Carrickfergus Mill Ponds during National Tree Week.
Kilcreggan volunteers working at Carrickfergus Mill Ponds during National Tree Week.

Schools, community groups and volunteers in Carrickfergus have shown their support for trees in the borough.

Mid & East Antrim Mayor, Councillor Lindsay Millar hailed all those who turned out for the various activities held locally for National Tree Week, the UK’s huge annual festival of trees.

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council has been supporting National Tree Week, a Tree Council initiative, for many years, and once again, the latest festival was marked with a wide range of events across the borough.

Mayor Millar said: “A big thank you to everyone who got involved in a range of tree planting and management activities for Tree Week this year”.

Over 120 school children, including pupils from Whitehead Primary School, turned out and planted hundreds of native trees at Carnfunnock County Park and Diamond Jubilee Wood and other venues across the borough. The Base Kilcreggan and Silverstream PS helped out with essential orchard weeding and mulching at Carrickfergus Mill Ponds and Greenisland Community Orchard. Scouts along with volunteers were hedgelaying at Diamond Jubilee Wood and Larne Allotment Holders were coppicing and creating willow hurdles at Larne Allotment Gardens.

Rosie Tweedie, a teacher at Silverstream PS, said: “The pupils loved learning about native apple trees and all the insects and birds that live in the orchard. They were especially delighted to find some unusual mushrooms and to use all the tools.

“We were so pleased to be involved in maintaining the orchard and we will be coming back in Autumn to harvest apples”.

Cllr Millar said: “Trees are so important to our landscape and Council is committed to promoting the importance of trees, and providing opportunities for people to get involved in tree planting and management.

“Trees can improve air quality by producing oxygen, storing carbon, moderating the effects of sun and wind, and they clean the air by trapping dust, pollen and other pollutants. Trees provide food and shelter for wildlife such as birds, squirrels and bugs, as well as for people. Tree planting season continues throughout the winter through to March. Planting trees is one of the easiest and most sustainable ways to positively affect the environment, so why not get out and plant a tree yourself? Consider planting native species such as oak, elder, and hawthorn, our local wildlife will thank you for it.”

Free native tree packs are available to schools and community groups via The Woodland Trust. More details at

www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/plant-trees/free-trees/