Eight Surrey charities and organisations have received a special tree from The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC) ‘Tree of Trees’ to thank them for the valuable and tireless work they undertake for the benefit of their communities.


Part of the ‘Tree of Trees’ sculpture – created by designer Thomas Heatherwick to be a centrepiece of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend outside Buckingham Palace – the trees were presented by the Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey, Michael More-Molyneux, who visited each location during November.  Each organisation received their special tree in The Queen’s name, gifted in a pot embossed with Her Majesty’s cypher.


The Surrey charities and organisations are:  The Meath Epilepsy Charity, Godalming; Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village, Compton; Royal Surrey County Hospital, Guildford; Frimley Park Hospital, Frimley; space2grow, Farnham; The Therapy Garden, Normandy; Surrey Outdoor Learning and Development, Mickleham and The Patchworking Garden Project, Dorking.


These organisations are amongst 350 organisations from across the UK who were recently announced by the QGC as recipients of one of the British native trees from the ‘Tree of Trees’ sculpture.  The sculpture celebrated The Queen’s Green Canopy, a nationwide tree-planting initiative devised to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee which inspired over a million trees to be planted.


Following the wishes of His Majesty The King, the initiative has been extended, creating a living legacy and a lasting tribute to Her Majesty’s extraordinary service to her country and to her people.


The Lord-Lieutenant said:


“Her late Majesty planted over 1,500 trees all over the world throughout her 70-year reign.  The ‘Tree of Trees’ sculpture put the importance of trees at the heart of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations. The sculpture stood tall as a message of hope, regeneration and optimism to the nation and to the world.”


“The Surrey Lieutenancy are delighted these Surrey charities and organisations have been selected by The Queen’s Green Canopy to receive these special trees as a thank you for the vital role they play in our community, often using the natural environment to improve health and wellbeing.”


He added:


“It is hoped that these trees will raise awareness of the need to plant trees and will inspire and encourage others to get involved in tree planting.  Trees planted across the country in Her Majesty’s name benefit current and future generations and create an extraordinary living legacy.”


Quotes from the eight organisations


Lucy Miguda, Head of Fundraising, The Meath Epilepsy Charity, commented:


“We are honoured to have been recognised by Michael More-Molyneux and the Queen’s Green Canopy Team for the work we do for adults with complex epilepsy and disabilities.  This beautiful birch tree has been planted next to the acer tree we planted last year to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. These two very special trees are located in front of our Skills Centre and the people we support are pleased that they join the many other trees and plants in their stunning grounds in helping to inspire their learning and appreciation of nature.”


Alistair Burtenshaw, Brice Director and Chief Executive, Watts Gallery Trust, said:


“It is an honour to receive this special tree and, on behalf of everyone at Watts Gallery Trust, I would like to convey thanks to the Lord-Lieutenant and to The Queen’s Green Canopy. The tree will be an enduring tribute to Her Late Majesty here at Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village.”


“I also want to thank our staff, volunteers and supporters, who work tirelessly to deliver our Art for All by All vision which speaks to the founding mission of artists, G F and Mary Watts, and is at the heart of our work today.  We could not do what we do without you and I thank you all.”


Louise Stead, Chief Executive of Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust said:


“The Queen dedicated her life to public service and as our Patron had a close personal connection to the Trust.”


“We welcomed both Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh to the Trust in 1981 to officially open the hospital and then again 16 years later to open our new St Luke’s Cancer Centre.”


“We were delighted to be chosen as one of the 350 organisations across the UK to receive a lasting legacy honouring her extraordinary service to both her country and her people.”


“The gift of the tree also recognises the valuable and tireless efforts of our staff, including their exceptional efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic.”


Neil Dardis, Chief Executive, Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, said:


“We are delighted to be chosen as one of the 350 organisations across the UK to receive a lasting legacy honouring Her Majesty The Queen’s extraordinary service to both her country and her people.”


“The gift of the tree also recognises the valuable and tireless efforts of our staff which is a fantastic tribute to their hard work and dedication during the challenges of the last few years.”


Nicola Chinn, founding trustee of space2grow, said:


“We are thrilled and proud to be chosen to receive a tree for our contribution to the Farnham community. This tree is a thank you to all the volunteers and supporters who work so hard to make our little acre of wild garden such a special place and it was wonderful to see so many of them here today. The hazel perfectly suits the space and will be an inspiration to us all to keep planting trees and enjoy the benefits of time spent in nature.”


Penny Walters, Manager, the Therapy Garden, said:


“On behalf of the staff, trustees, volunteers and clients of the Therapy Garden and the wider community of Normandy village, I would like to thank the Lord-Lieutenant for the gift of this beautiful tree from the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Green Canopy ‘Tree of Trees’ sculpture.”


“The Therapy Garden is deeply honoured to be one of the Surrey recipients of such a special tree, and, embracing the original sculpture’s symbolism of hope, regeneration and optimism, we will cherish and nurture this silver birch and all that it stands for.”


“The tree will provide a spectacular habitat for wildlife and will enhance our Garden for many years to come.   It will also mark the start of the planting of a small area of new woodland within the Therapy Garden for the benefit of wildlife, for nature observation and for quiet reflection whilst also serving as a living legacy to the name of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.”


Martin Cusselle, Head of Surrey Outdoor Learning and Development (SOLD), said:


“Surrey Outdoor Learning and Development (SOLD) feel very privileged to have been awarded this honour in recognition for the quality learning and development we undertake with young people who visit our outdoor learning centres – High Ashurst in Mickleham, Dorking, Henley Fort in Guildford and Thames Young Mariners in Ham, Richmond.  These young people range from mainstream schools to SEN and vulnerable young people across Surrey and beyond.  SOLD will ensure that the legacy of the Green Canopy is shared with our visiting groups to High Ashurst where the tree has been planted for all to see in front of our main centre.”


Carmel O’Shea, Founder of The Patchworking Garden Project, said:


“We are honoured to have been chosen to receive a tree from the Queen’s special selection of ‘Tree of Trees’.”


“Planting it in the field adjacent to our academy, will mean it will be seen and shared by the whole community, spreading the message that the preservation of nature, which we already hold as a central tenet of our organisation needs to be valued and upheld.”


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For further information about The Queen’s Green Canopy:


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Image: Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village is one of the eight Surrey organisations to receive a tree from The Queen’s Green Canopy.  Photo: Andy Newbold