The new Tree Health Centre

Yorkshire Arboretum

Home to over 6,000 trees from around the world, the Arboretum runs a programme of events to help inspire and educate visitors to the 120 acre site, in addition to increasing conservation efforts.

The Prince of Wales's Charitable Fund (PWCF) awarded £221,706 over three years to the Yorkshire Arboretum in 2019. The Yorkshire Arboretum is committed to improving understandings of our trees and woodlands.

In particular, the projects supported by PWCF have worked to enhance knowledge and understandings of tree pests and diseases. Alongside this, the Arboretum is promoting strategies to manage woodland in a manner which promotes good tree health and sustainability.

The PWCF award has supported three projects at the North Yorkshire site:

  1. The creation of a red squirrel enclosure. The new enclosure will help to boost red squirrel numbers in Britain by providing space for a new breeding colony. Construction is nearly complete, and young squirrels will move in to the enclosure next spring.
  2. A collaborative research project which investigated feeding hoppers as a means of delivery of contraceptives for grey squirrels. Grey squirrels are classified as a pest in our native woodlands. The research was conducted by the Animal and Plant Health agency, and was tested within the arboretum grounds. It concluded that the feeding hoppers were an effective method of delivering contraception, though in need of some refinement.
  3. The establishment of a new Tree Health Centre. The new building will act as a centre of excellence in training to address the lack of skills, capacity and capability in tree health and security. By establishing new, accredited tree health training courses to educating professionals, the Yorkshire Arboretum will work to safeguard our nations trees for the years to come. Awareness will also be raised through education of wider public about issues regarding tree diseases and pests through visits to the Tree Health Centre.

The Yorkshire Arboretum hopes to make people more aware of the importance of a healthy treescape, and the problems caused by tree pests and diseases. Find out more about the Yorkshire Arboretum here.