What is a Tree Champion?
Bristol needs more Tree Champions – some areas still have no one. We will help you get started! If you have a wish to see the Trees near you protected, and to see new Trees planted in your area, then you could become your area’s local Tree Champion.
A Tree Champion is an ordinary resident who takes on the task of helping to get new trees planted, and who works to protect existing trees in public spaces or where land is being developed.
It is to be hoped that when you decide to become a Tree Champion you will become active in Bristol Tree Forum.
Become a BTF Tree Champion
In the days of Neighbourhood Partnerships (NPs), Tree Champions tended to emerge from within each NP’s Environment Group. NPs have now been disbanded. Some Tree Champions have nevertheless carried on with their efforts looking out for local trees, but now, to become a Tree Champion, it would be best to contact us and/or approach the successor organisation to your local NP – now likely to be a Ward Forum – and declare your interest.
Since the demise of NPs, the control of funding for new and replacement trees has changed dramatically. Now each of six new Area Committees (made up of the Councillors for the wards in each Area) will be responsible for allocating the spend of developers’ contribution funds (s106 and CIL) available in their area. Sadly, no provision has been made for community representation on these committees, though community groups are able to put forward proposals for funding.
The Area Committee Map
Sites where trees may be planted are published on the Council’s TreeBristol sponsorship map. As a Tree Champion you can either bid for funds to replace trees or to plant new trees from your Area Committee or help members of the public who want to plant a tree to navigate the Council sponsorship website to find a site.
It looks daunting, but the current Tree Champions have years of experience which they are always willing to share. They can be found via our Make contact page. Please use say roughly what you would like to achieve and, most crucially the ward you live in. If you do not know it, your post code will do. We will put you in touch with an experienced Tree Champion to start you off on your journey. We would also need your permission to share your email address with the Tree Champion we find, whom we can guarantee would only use it to contact you for BTF purposes.
Becoming a Tree Champions is a learning experience, but can be very fulfilling: At first you might only need to be involved with finding new tree planting sites, but over time you may help with fund raising or, if you like, get involved with checking planning applications in your area to help to defend existing trees. You only need get involved as much as you want to, though.
How can I Volunteer?
If you would like to volunteer to help with this important role, please contact us.