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Help us create beacons of hope for people and wildlife across the UK

The Young People’s Forest in Mead in Derbyshire is a wonderful example of the work we are doing throughout the UK to create havens for wildlife and engage with young people.

Here, on 162 hectares of former opencast mining land, we’ll be planting more than 250,000 trees to create a thriving new woodland, fringed with hedgerows and scattered with biodiverse ponds, open spaces and swathes of glorious species-rich grassland.

We hope this transformation will significantly increase the number and range of wildlife. There is already evidence of badgers and water voles, and surveys show more than 40 types of bird and five bat species.

We’ll be installing bat boxes to encourage species like the pipistrelle bat to make their home there. (Photo: Laurie Campbell/WTML)

This special place will become a giant outdoor classroom for children and young people aged 10-20. They’ll be involved right from the start, planting trees, learning about nature and designing, delivering and taking part in activities. It will be life changing.

Young people will be involved to help design and plan the new wood (Photo: WTML)

The Young People’s Forest is only possible thanks to funding from Pears Foundation, The Veolia Environmental Trust, Biffa Award, Nationwide Building Society, a gift from a generous supporter, and the Pears #iwill Fund, a joint investment from the National Lottery Community Fund, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Pears Foundation, supporting the goals of the #iwill campaign.

We need your help throughout the UK

Mead is just one example of the work we do to plant trees and create new woodland – and just one of over 1000 sites we own and manage across the UK for the benefit of both people and wildlife. The need for trees in this country is acute. We currently have just 13% tree cover, compared with a European average of 37%. The repercussions are critical – for climate change, for the air we breathe, for wildlife and for our health and well-being. 

Please donate today so that we can create more wildlife havens and change the lives of young people elsewhere in the UK.

Evidence of water voles has been seen at Mead (Photo: iStock.com)

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