Local MP, Huw Merriman, joined Westham Parish councillors to plant 5 trees in the village as part of the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, a network of forest conservation initiatives to mark Her Majesty's lifetime of service to the Commonwealth.
The trees - two silver birch, two rowan, and a hazel – were planted at Butcher’s Field opposite St Mary’s Church in Westham village last Friday.
They were donated to Mr Merriman thanks to a partnership between the Woodland Trust, Sainsbury’s and ITV, which in April screened a landmark documentary, The Queen's Green Planet, following Her Majesty the Queen and this ambitious legacy project which brings together her deeply held commitment to the Commonwealth and her little-known love of trees.
Representing 220 square miles of rural East Sussex, Mr Merriman signed up on behalf of his constituents and received a request from Westham Parish Council for them to be planted in their parish.
Huw said “I was delighted that Westham Parish Council got in touch to see if the trees could be planted in Butchers Field. The field was purchased in 2002 by Westham Parish Council to commemorate the Queen's Golden Jubilee so it is entirely fitting that trees to mark the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy are planted here. I understand that over the coming years, the parish council hope that some work can be undertaken in order to restore the soil so that suitable meadow plants can be reinstated in this beautiful public space overlooking the village of Westham and Pevensey Castle. As the Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Bees and Pollinators, this is great to hear as I am passionate about adding to our green landscape and providing habitats for our precious pollinators.”
Gill Parsons, councillor and tree officer for Westham Parish Council said “Westham Parish Council were very pleased to be able to join in the nationwide celebration of the Queens Commemoration of Commonwealth by planting the five trees in Butchers Field.”