Greater Manchester Low Carbon Hub. Delivering Greater Manchester's transition to a low-carbon economy

Heritage Oak in Wythenshawe Park

Heritage trees get a helping hand

Across 179 sites in Greater Manchester covering 874 acres, there are pockets of woodland recorded in the Ancient Woodland Inventory that stretch back across centuries.

Last year the Red Rose Forest Team carried out a survey to identify ancient and important trees across Greater Manchester which are ‘at risk’. They included a huge oak in Wythenshawe Park (above) whose main trunk has split in two and requires urgent attention to preserve it and a yew tree in Jubilee Park in Wigan (below) which is in declining health.

These trees, along with 13 others identified in the ‘Trees in Need of TLC’ survey, will now receive the help they need to secure their future, courtesy of the funding announced today from the HLF.

Jubilee Park Yew Tree, Wigan

Over the next four years, in addition to bringing these tress into care and management, Greater Manchester’s Heritage Trees will collect people’s stories, photographs and memories about their local trees, woodlands, orchards and hedgerows. The aim is to build up an online record of the city’s tree heritage and the special part it plays in our society and culture.

The £646,000 investment from the HLF will also mean vital work can be carried out to protect and enhance important trees and areas of woodland to safeguard their future for this and future generations.

They form the backdrop to our lives and make urban areas nicer places to live and work and provide incalculable benefits to our health and wellbeing.

“Trees have played a crucial role in the history and heritage of the towns and cities of Greater Manchester," said Hilary Wood, Green Streets Manager at Red Rose Forest. "They form the backdrop to our lives and make urban areas nicer places to live and work and provide incalculable benefits to our health and wellbeing.

“Just imagine a Greater Manchester without trees and you realise how critical they are. They have shaped our lives as individuals as well as our local history, culture and society.

“Greater Manchester’s Heritage Trees will enable us to celebrate, document and preserve this vital natural element of our urban landscape. Local people will have an essential role to play in the project. We want people to share their memories of playing outdoors and the memories they have of local trees and woodland. By capturing these stories it will tell us so much about our local history and heritage, about our sense of place and our culture and identity.

"There will also be lots of opportunities to get involved through volunteering to record and protect our tree heritage.”

“Greater Manchester’s Heritage Trees will tell the story of the intimate connection between local people and their tree heritage," according to Sara Hilton, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund North West. 

People in Greater Manchester are passionate about their tree heritage - with people often mobilising to save trees or areas of woodland which may be under threat.

“People in Greater Manchester are passionate about their tree heritage - with people often mobilising to save trees or areas of woodland which may be under threat. This project will tap into that passion to ensure we look after this part of our natural heritage, conserve it and learn more about its value and its place in our lives.”

As well as organising events and learning opportunities, the project will also work with older people and people who have dementia to record their stories and memories of local tree heritage. More information about Greater Manchester’s Heritage Trees can be found on the Red Rose Forest website if you click here

Visit the main Platform site