10 January 2017
Eight semi-mature trees were planted to honour some of the Gorse Hill’s oldest residents.
Local community group Gorgeous Gorse Hill, alongside Trafford Housing Trust, Trafford Council and City of Trees planted the trees as part of the ‘New for Old’ project.
The idea came about as Gorgeous Gorse Hill realised that some older residents living in the area couldn’t get involved in some of their planting activities due to mobility problems, but wanted to green up their community.
The trees were planted to improve the look and feel of the area, as well as boosting biodiversity and encouraging wildlife onto the estate.
Gorgeous Gorse Hill group members interviewed elderly local residents, whose memories of trees, parks and open spaces were then inscribed onto wooden tree charms and hung from the trees.
The project has also helped to bridge the generation gap, with children from Gorse Hill Primary School getting involved to help with the planting.
Marje Kelly, 74, a local residents comments; "I really love the trees at this time of year. As the old trees' leaves change to beautiful colours in the autumn, our new trees have new roots ready to follow in their footsteps." She adds; "I enjoy being involved with Gorgeous Gorse Hill. It opens up a world for me."
Another community member Molly Brown, 92, has lived in the area for over 66 years and comments; “I used to take my son and daughter to the local park and play for hours. It helped me to meet other mums in the area and make lifelong friends." She adds; “It was good for me and my family to be out in the fresh air and the greenery. I love blossom trees – they are my favourite trees.”
Mary Patel, from Gorgeous Gorse Hill, says: “From speaking to local residents we have realised how much our trees and parks are woven into people’s memories – their favourite cherry blossom, the pleasure taken in seeing a once-tired park being revitalised. The memories show us how important trees and parks are to our collective identity. We’d like to thank everyone who has helped us with this great project.”
Beth Kelsall from City of Trees comments; “Community spirit is strong in the area, and we loved working with local residents to bring a touch of green to the urban environment, as well as celebrate the importance of our trees, woods and wildlife”.
Environmental charity City of Trees aims to plant 3 million trees, one for every man, woman and child that lives in the City Region, within a generation; as well as bring back 2,000 hectares of unloved woodland back into use.
Photo caption: Pictured L – R: Beth Kelsall, City of Trees; Marje Kelly and Joan Green volunteers and local residents and Ruth Hannan, Chair of Gorgeous Gorse Hill.