Heartwood Forest in Hertfordshire has been recognised by national grant funder Biffa Award at its 2014 awards ceremony.
Administered by the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts, Biffa Award distributes grants to environmental and community projects, using landfill tax credits donated by Biffa Group Ltd. Each year, the people transforming their communities and improving the environment through Biffa Award projects are recognised at the Biffa Awards ceremony.
More than 260 eligible projects were whittled down to a shortlist of just 20 across five categories: Community Buildings, Recreation, Small Grants, Cultural Facilities and Rebuilding Biodiversity.
Heartwood Forest won the Rebuilding Biodiversity category, with the strong sense of community ownership impressing the independent Biffa Award judge.
We [Woodland Trust] have now planted over 400,000 trees on site since 2009, creating roughly 140 hectares of new native woodland which also links up four existing pockets of ancient woodland. More importantly every single tree has been planted by a volunteer, with the Heartwood volunteer group in particular providing ongoing support and commitment come rain or shine.
Gillian French, Biffa Award Programme Manager, said: “The Biffa Awards are a unique opportunity to celebrate and reward the dedicated people who are delivering some of the excellent projects we have funded.
“All of our projects deserve recognition for the work they do, but we are delighted for the Woodland Trust on their success at this year’s Awards. The project has not only sown the seeds for what will undoubtedly be an important pocket of woodland, it has also provided a number of local communities with a connection to their local environment, which should be applauded.”
Louise Neicho, Woodland Trust Site Manager, added: “We’re delighted to receive this recognition from Biffa Award, it is testament to the hard work of every single person who has supported the Trust locally over the last five years and especially our Heartwood volunteer group.