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Cambridge City Council

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Neighbourhood Canopy Campaign

Phase two of the campaign is now open - if you live in the Verulam Way area of Arbury, find out how to claim your free tree below.

Cambridge currently has 17% tree canopy cover – meaning leaves and branches cover 17% of the city’s ground area. This is more than the national average, but we are working to increase it to 19%.

Tree canopy cover in Cambridge varies from ward to ward. Newnham in the west of the city has 22.6% cover, while Cherry Hinton and Abbey in the east have only 12.8% and 12.9% respectively.

This unequal distribution of trees and green spaces across the city will impact residents in different ways. While the benefits of easy access to natural spaces and features like trees continue to be studied, the links to increased physical and mental wellbeing are clear.

Recognising this inequality across the city, we have launched the Neighbourhood Canopy Campaign.

Every year we will identify areas with low tree canopy cover and prioritise one of them based on their need. The government’s Index of Multiple Deprivation will help us identify areas with the greatest need.

Through the campaign, we’ll be giving free trees and shrubs, including fruit and pollinating species, to residents in the target areas to help improve tree canopy cover. If we can, we’ll also give away bird boxes, insect hotels, water butts and wildflower seed mixes.

Campaign 2: Verulam Way area, Arbury

We have selected the Verulam Way area of Arbury for our second Neighbourhood Canopy campaign.

If you live on one of the streets listed below, complete our online application form to claim your free tree. We’ll ask you to tell us which species of tree you would prefer, and what your contact details are.

Claim your free tree

The application deadline is 14 November 2021. We will deliver the trees in January and February 2022.

Eligible streets

  • Arbury Road
  • Aylesborough Close
  • Brackley Close
  • Ellesmere Road
  • Ferrars Way
  • Fordwich Close
  • Harris Road
  • Hazelwood Close
  • Jermyn Close
  • Mere Way
  • Northumberland Close
  • Roseford Road
  • Rutland Close
  • Somerset Close
  • St Albans Road
  • Verulam Way

Our phase 2 map [PDF, 0.6MB] shows the boundary of the area. Some properties on the streets listed above will fall outside the boundary – those properties will not be eligible for a free tree.

Campaign 1: Whitehill Road estate, Abbey

The first area identified by the campaign, in late 2020, was the Whitehill Road estate in Abbey ward.

In total, 81 residents applied to claim a tree. The most popular variety was the edible cherry, followed by dessert apples, and edible plums.

And nearly 100 fruit trees were donated to CoFarm Cambridge to help establish their orchard, including more than 80 apple trees from heritage varieties.

We delivered these trees in time to plant them before the end of the recommended planting season, which runs from November to March.