Making Cambridge greener, one street at a time

25th August 2021

Cambridge Council is one of the first UK councils to join Trees for Streets, the new national street tree sponsorship scheme.

Trees for Streets is a project by Trees for Cities, the national urban tree charity, funded by the government’s Green Recovery Challenge Fund. It aims to support the planting of more than a quarter of a million street trees nationwide over the next ten years.

The Trees for Streets online platform allows anyone to sponsor a street tree in their neighbourhood by making a donation, and completing a few simple details. A request is automatically sent to the council, and if the chosen spot is appropriate, they will arrange to plant a tree the following winter: the best time to plant young trees to ensure they grow and thrive.

Cllr Alex Collis, Executive Councillor for Open Spaces, Sustainable Food and Community Wellbeing is excited about the potential of this project:

“This is a really exciting development for Cambridge. This scheme makes it possible for all residents to make a direct contribution to improving their neighbourhood for generations to come, and complements the ongoing work of the Cambridge Canopy Project. We’re taking a holistic view of the whole city – while there are some areas of Cambridge that are leafy and offer lots of green space, there are still plenty where we want to increase the tree cover, so every tree counts in expanding our urban forest.”

Why are street trees important?

Street trees are pretty amazing –here’s what they do for us:

  • capture carbon dioxide and produce oxygen
  • improve our health and wellbeing – both physically and mentally
  • absorb air pollution
  • improve air quality by acting like natural filters
  • protect us from flooding
  • create shading and cooling – so important in towns and cities
  • make the neighbourhoods where we live that bit nicer

Other ways to help: Once each street tree is planted, it will need watering every week throughout the summer for 3 years to give it the best chance of survival, and it will appreciate a regular tidy up to remove litter and weeds.

By donating your time (and water) to care for street trees, you’ll be contributing to a legacy for your community. It’s also a great opportunity to chat with neighbours, and enjoy the fresh air these trees provide.

Find out more: