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Tree Planting November 20th 2021
A Golden Day

Images supplied by Francis Phillips of a Community Tree-Planting event at Durham County Council’s Chester Moor Nature Reserve on November 20, 2021. Rotary Club of Chester-le-Streetis grateful for help and permission from Durham Council’s Countryside Department, for enthusiastic help from Chester-le-Street Boys’ Brigade and to The Woodland Trust for supplying healthyBritish-sourced saplings with tree-guards.

The nature reserve is on the site of the former Chester South Moor Colliery, a deep coal and mineral mine closed and landscaped in 1987. The mine’s extensive underground tunnels and workings arestill owned and monitored by The Coal Authority. Today this bodyhas developed newroles in sustainable minewater heating schemes and environmental protection.It has pioneeredtwo area heating projects in former coal mines, one at Seaham and a second in Gateshead. The Authority has mapped out potential ‘green’ minewater heat energy opportunities throughout the UK, discovering that no less than 75% of the UK population live over former mines.

A small notice left near the main path in case any dog walkers think they have found a new track!

First to arrive is veteran planter Fred Richards with a helper, being greeted by the Warden Gary Whitton

Soon after that other Rotary big guns start to arrive (L to R) Derick Lawson, (with his Boys’ Brigade lads, plus Mums and Dads out in force), John Stewart, Chair Club Service Cmttee, John Tootill, Club President, Brian Straughan, Club Sec. and Linda Watson, Immediate Past-President.


The real workforce sets to with relish and the job rattles along. The reserve’s bird hide, a unique feature not seen in any of Durham County Council’s other Countryside Parks, can be seen in the distance

Warden Gary Whitton explains to Paul Keeley, Rotary’s Northeast tree planting expert, how the planting plan on Saturday helped him screen off some unsightly diseased Ash trees, while leaving his healthy ones in place. Culled deadwood has been moved back into the adjacent thicket to rot down over time and will add nutrient to the carbon-capturing woodland floor as it matures behind

John Stewart, Club development and Community Service Committee Chairman is thrilled at the turnout

Long-serving Rotarian Bill Holden and wife Nancy learned how to meet on zoom over lockdown, but are now keen to begin handing over the batonto the next generation And so…Job done. Many thanks everyone.
It was fun.
Francis Phillips, Club Environment and Public Relations Officer: 07710743626
(Photos: Kate Phillips)


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