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Dutch Elm Disease

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN HL17355, tabled on 22 July 2019

To ask Her Majesty's Government what, if any, was the policy for planting new trees after the losses caused by Dutch elm disease.

Answered on

31 July 2019

The National Tree Planting Year of 1973, with its slogan of Plant a tree in ’73, was the Government-sponsored tree planting campaign initiated to compensate for the loss of trees caused by Dutch elm disease. The Forestry Commission donated some 90,000 trees to schools and a further 70,000 for joint projects with local authorities, as did other organisations including the Crown Estate Commissioners.

It also led to the founding of the Tree Council, with Government backing, as the umbrella body for organisations involved in tree planting, care and conservation.

The Forestry Commission has an ongoing programme of grants schemes available for planting, subject to specific criteria and subject to an obligation to manage woodlands with sound forestry practice.