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Churchyard Trees Conferences

Supporting churchyards to manage their trees, and utilise their value

Two free training conferences in late 2016 to support the management of churchyard trees, and raise awareness of their value. Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The conferences took place in Liverpool Cathedral in October, and St Johns Waterloo, London in November.

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Why churchyards are important

The Church of England has some 10,000 churchyards, and is one of the largest private owners of trees. The often great age of churchyards, and the long term protection they offer, means many of these trees are particularly important, and others have the potential to become so.

"We cannot underestimate the value of the huge number of trees growing in the CofE's 10,000 churchyards. They represent a major shared-asset throughout the country and cannot be taken for granted. These two conferences and the management plan which we hope will result are vital to ensure churchyard trees continue to thrive and benefit so many local communities."

Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, Bishop of Salisbury, the CofE's lead bishop for the Environment and Chair,Environment Working Group

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What are the conferences?

To support this vital resource, The Conservation Foundation held two free Churchyard Tree Conferences in late 2016 with the Church of England and Caring for Gods Acre - in Liverpool on October 6th and London on November 2nd.

Speakers included Dr Hilary Taylor, historical landscapes consultant and advisor to the Church Buildings Council, Russell Ball, former Executive of the International Society of Arboriculture and London Tree Officers Association, Revd Nigel Cooper of the Church Buildings Council and ecological consultant to the Church of England, Caring for Gods Acre, and others. The conferences discussed the significance of churchyard trees, management considerations, interpreting your churchyard trees to the community, and more.

You can send in your experiences, big or small, by adding your voice to the Charter for Trees, Woods and People. It can be a short memory, a quick anecdote, or something longer.

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Information from the conferences