A tree-mendous 2020 for Welwyn Hatfield!

The Tree Council has announced a conference in Welwyn Garden City to mark the UK's first ever Plant Health Week. The announcement coincides with the borough of Welwyn Hatfield being awarded 'Tree City of the World' status by the United Nations.


Welwyn Hatfield is one of only a handful of local authorities in the country to secure the prestigious 'Tree City of the World' accreditation, which recognises the council's commitment to planting and high standards in caring for the borough's urban trees.

A recent 'Treeconomics' report assessing the benefits of Welwyn Hatfield's trees estimates that it would cost around £27m to replace them and that they capture 3,384 tonnes of CO2  per year - the equivalent of 1,328 people driving a car for over 10 years!

The conference entitled 'Healthy Trees, Healthy Places, Healthy People' will take place on Wednesday 22 April at the Council Chambers. Keynote speakers include distinguished author and environmentalist Jonathan Drori and Nicola Spence, Chief Plant Health Officer at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

The event, which is open to all, aims to welcome volunteer Tree Wardens and members of the public, who are showing ever-increasing interest in planting, protecting and caring for trees and our natural environment.

Councillor Stephen Boulton, Executive Member for Environment, Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, said:

We're thrilled to have our approach to trees recognised in this way and I believe it reflects how deeply the council and our residents care about the borough's environment.

We're very fortunate to have such a vast array of beautiful trees and we will continue to do everything we can to protect what we have and encourage our tree landscape to flourish for the future.

Sara Lom, CEO, The Tree Council said:

We're delighted to be partnering with Welwyn Hatfield during the UK's first ever Plant Health Week and proud that their sympathetic and forward-thinking approach to trees has been internationally recognised.

The health of the UK's trees is fragile and it's vital that we are all aware of what simple actions we can take to help protect them. Plant Health Week is a perfect opportunity to raise awareness of the importance of tree health - which not only benefits wildlife and the environment but also our own wellbeing and local economy. If we work together, we can be the first generation to leave the environment in a better state than we found it.

Tickets for the conference are free and available to book at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/healthy-trees-healthy-places-health-people-tickets-97089694891

This week also marks the launch of the Welwyn Garden City Centenary Foundation's 'City of Trees' project, which has seen new walks and trail maps designed to celebrate the beauty and variety of WGC's 19,000 trees. Further information will be available at an event in the Howard Centre on Saturday 14 March.