The community successfully plants over 1,000 native trees at a local heritage site.

On Saturday 23rd March, 2024, over 100 members of the local community gathered at Butser Ancient Farm, a not-for-profit heritage site and open air museum in East Hampshire, to participate in a community tree planting event.

The event, which aimed to promote community involvement in conservation and environmental sustainability, saw the planting of over 1,000 native trees. Participants were encouraged to immerse themselves in nature through talks and walks on native trees and wild foraging, as well as hands-on activities such as making clay and pebble art with leaves and paints.

The day also featured a community tree blessing, where attendees were invited to tie ribbons to trees as a symbol of celebration and gratitude towards nature. Katherine Brooks, volunteer coordinator at Butser, expressed her gratitude to all those who attended, stating that the event was a great example of the power of community spirit.

Butser worked closely with local community groups to ensure the event was inclusive and accessible for all, particularly those from deprived areas. The day was presided over by Hampshire MP Damian Hinds and Petersfield town crier Faye Thompson, and was supported by Butser volunteers.

All the trees planted were of native species, including crab apple, holly, dog rose, hawthorn, and wild cherry. These trees will be incorporated into Butser’s growing network of native hedgerows, providing green pathways, safe nesting, and seasonal food for local wildlife.

Imogen Carter, community gardener at Butser, highlighted the urgency of conservation and environmental sustainability and the importance of engaging people with nature. She expressed her excitement at the opportunity to expand Butser’s range of heritage trees in their historic gardens, and hoped that the community would find natural solutions to combat the climate and biodiversity crisis.

Building on the success of the tree planting, Butser will also be offering free workshops this May on the ancient wisdom of plants. These workshops aim to engage young people and their families with nature and share how plants were used for food, healing, dyeing, and crafts throughout our ancient history. The workshops will offer hands-on activities, including planting in Butser’s historic garden areas, exploring the ancient medicinal uses of healing plants, natural plant-based dyeing, and using plant fibres to produce cordage.

Participants in both the tree planting and workshops will also receive access to nature-based informational videos from Butser’s video documentary platform, Butser Plus. This initiative is part of a project funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, as part of East Hampshire District Council’s Grow Up! programme.

Butser Ancient Farm is currently open to visitors on weekends and school holidays until the end of October, with plans to reopen in December for a season of magical festive events connecting visitors to the ancient traditions of midwinter. To find out more about Butser and their upcoming events, visit and

Derick is an experienced reporter having held multiple senior roles for large publishers across Europe. Specialist subjects include small business and financial emerging markets.

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