THEALE, UK, June 29, 2012: As part of its ‘Greening the UK’ campaign, the Horticultural Trades Association is proud to be one of the main sponsors of a new guide on urban trees published today by The Trees and Design Action Group (TDAG) for all those involved in making or influencing the decisions that shape our neighbourhoods towns and cities.
With over 80% of the UK’s population living in urban settings, trees in and around built-up areas – which many call the “urban forest” – have become a key component of the infrastructure that makes places work, look and feel better.
Gary Scroby, Policy Manager at the HTA comments “Greening the UK is delighted to sponsor this important guide to delivering quality green infrastructure in our towns and cities. We encourage all landscape practitioners to adopt this best practice to ensure full delivery of the significant benefits that greening delivers”.
Trees in the Townscape, a Guide for Decision Makers takes a 21st century approach to urban trees, one that keeps pace with and responds to the challenges of our times. It offers 12 action-oriented principles spanning the range of planning, design, works and management issues that must be addressed for maximum economic, social and environmental returns.
34 case studies provide real-life examples of the principles in action, giving insight into best practice from all over England including Bristol, Birmingham, Plymouth, Torbay, Oxford, Sefton, Newcastle and Hackney as well as from further afield including the US and Hong Kong!
In keeping with TDAG’s ethos of raising awareness of the role of trees in the built environment by facilitating cross-sector and cross-disciplinary collaboration, the development of this new guide was based on over 40 interviews and extensive consultation with civil engineers, insurers, developers, designers, planners, tree officers, sustainability specialists, arboriculturists, tree nursery managers, ecologists, academics and not-for-profit organisations dedicated to community engagement and trees. Besides the Horticultural Trades Association, the project also benefited from the financial support of an astoundingly diverse range of co-sponsors.
Such bottom-up and collaborative approach has already paid back: Trees in the Townscape, a Guide for Decision Makers promptly received endorsements from 11 organisations including the Forestry Commission, Bristol City Council, Birmingham City Council, York City Council, Torbay Council, Newcastle City Council, the London Borough of Hackney, Westminster City Council, the Victoria Business Improvement District, Peabody, Tor Homes…and hopefully, this is only a start!
Martin Kelly, Chair of TDAG, said: “In the current challenging economic times, this guide provides timely advice on how to ensure that investment to solve one problem also delivers, where possible, solutions to others. Urban trees provide in this respect a fantastic resource.”
Pam Warhurst, Chair of the Forestry Commission, said: “We have supported the TDAG right from the very beginning as a founding member. We are proud to have been so involved in this excellent guide to support crucial local decision-making. Our councillors, parish council members and communities involved in neighbourhood planning make important decisions that affect the quality of life for all of us. They can now use sound, practical advice on how to make space for trees in towns to ensure they grow to last a lifetime. Our urban forest – the population of trees across our towns – will be better protected, improved and expanded through this initiative.”
The full guide is available as a free PDF at http://www.tdag.org.uk/trees-in-the-townscape.html