Marking centenary of opening of Centre Court and the Platinum Jubilee
Students at Southfields Academy help with the planting
December 19, 2022
The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) has donated more than 300 saplings for planting to organisations across the boroughs of Merton and Wandsworth.
It says it has made the gesture to celebrate two significant occasions in 2022: the centenary of Centre Court and Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, and her wish to plant trees to mark her 70-year reign.
In partnership with the Mayors of Merton and Wandsworth, the Wimbledon Centenary Canopy Project has seen trees donated to 23 local schools, organisations and green spaces across each borough.
Many of these donations were delivered during National Tree Planting week (26 November-4 December).
The project, which also marks the 100th year of Centre Court at its current site on Church Road, Wimbledon, will also see many oak saplings donated by the All England Club planted across the boroughs.
AELTC is currently facing a local backlash against plans for an expanded tennis facility which will be built on open space near its existing home.
One of the donated trees following the planting at Southfields Academy
Sally Bolton, Chief Executive of the All England Club, launched the project on Thursday 8 December at a special tree-planting ceremony at Southfield Academy, which was also attended by the Mayor of Wandsworth, Cllr Jeremy Ambache.
She said, “It is a real honour to play a role in celebrating and remembering Her Majesty The Queen. This is a great opportunity to ensure that her legacy lives on and to teach our children about the importance of preserving and improving the environment for future generations. We very much look forward to seeing these trees grow across our local area.”
Mayor of Wandsworth Council, Cllr Jeremy Ambache, said, “Trees offer significant benefits to our natural environment, cleaning our air and supporting wildlife, amongst other things. We are grateful to the AELTC for their partnership and are delighted that many organisations and the people of Wandsworth will get to enjoy the enhanced canopy for years to come - a fitting tribute to Her Majesty The Queen.”
To ensure a healthy tree population, the All England Club says it has grown a significant number of oak saplings by harvesting acorns from their best veteran and ancient oaks on their estate. The Club has also sourced a selection of UK-sown and grown saplings from other growers to be planted in smaller spaces where the size of an oak tree isn’t suitable.
List of local organisations in Merton and Wandsworth receiving a tree:
• Aragon Primary School
• Durnsford Recreation Ground
• Hatfield Primary School
• St Michael's CE School
• Wimbledon College
• Ace of Clubs
• Age UK Merton
• Deen City Farm & Riding School
• Gorringe Park Primary School
• Holy Trinity C of E Primary School
• Lonesome Primary School
• MMES: Melbury College
• Morden Primary School
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