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Ground Control has partnered with Severn Trent, the ‘Official Nature and Carbon Neutral Supporter’ of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, to create a positive social and environmental legacy across the West Midlands and to support the wider game’s effort to become the first carbon neutral Commonwealth Games. Whilst supporting the Commonwealth games goals, the project also aims to increase biodiversity whilst engaging the local community and providing a platform for environmental education.

Project Overview:

Ground Control and Severn Trent have engaged local communities, volunteers, and schools in creating 72 ‘Tiny Forests’ and planting 2022 acres of ‘Legacy Forests’.

  • Tiny Forests included the creation of 72 ‘tennis-court-sized’ forests that are planted and linked with local schools and each represent a territory competing in the Games.
  • Legacy Forests are 2022 acres of woodland planted across multiple sites in the West Midlands to support the carbon sequestration aims, and to plant a legacy that can be enjoyed by the community.
Commonwealth Games mascot 'Perry' at a Tiny Forest planting day

Tiny Forests:

The project collaborated with local schools to align each Tiny Forest with a different school. Pupils joined Ground Control for educational planting days to get ‘hands on’ experience with native species and to learn about the importance of biodiversity. The long term aims of this, is that these schools, such as the Four Dwellings Academy in Birmingham and Chadsgrove School in Bromsgrove, continue to access their outdoor classroom in future years to understand how the forest grows, establishes, and develops. This education will encourage and inspire positive action in future generations and support the aims of a lasting legacy across the West Midlands

Volunteers for a Tiny Forest planting day

To maximise the positive biodiversity impact per square metre of forest, every Tiny Forest comprises of selection of native trees and shrubs with supporting preliminary works and soil preparation to mitigate issues like compaction, and to optimise the water capacity of the soil.

The planting of native species such as English and Sessile Oak, Dony and Silver Birch and Hawthorn increases the chances of successful establishment, reduces the amount of maintenance, and can importantly act as food, shelter, and pollinators for local wildlife.

A selection of Tiny Forest locations across the West Midlands

Legacy Forests

To achieve Severn Trent’s aims as the ‘Official Nature and Carbon Neutral Supporter’ of the
Commonwealth Games, and to leave a legacy in the West Midlands, 2022 acres of broad leaf,
mixed woodlands have been planted across multiple locations. The end results will be a series of woodlands, all of which is suitable for the climate they are planted in to’, and in most cases in areas that communities can enjoy. It also allows for local wildlife and biodiversity to flourish.

Wombourne - Legacy Forest planting site

The engagement of local communities in the planting days will be essential to the long-term
success and leaving a ‘lasting legacy’. Family friendly planting days have allowed for communities to be engage, with volunteers who said;

I wanted to have a positive impact on the future
Wombourne planting day volunteer
Ground Control has partnered with Severn Trent, the ‘Official Nature and Carbon Neutral Supporter’ of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, to create a positive social and environmental legacy across the West Midlands and to support the wider game’s effort to become the first carbon neutral Commonwealth Games. Whilst supporting the Commonwealth games goals, the project also aims to increase biodiversity whilst engaging the local community and providing a platform for environmental education.
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Ground Control and Severn Trent plant 10,000 trees across the West Midlands ready for the Commonwealth Games
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Preparing the ground for a Commonwealth Games legacy

Ground Control supports Severn Trent with the planting of 2022 acres of Commonwealth Forest across the Midlands  
Service Category

Construction

Creating bespoke landscapes that enhance our environments and bring together human and nature at its best
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sector

Energy, utilities and inland water

Maintaining and enhancing land surrounding some of the UK’s most critical infrastructure within the Utilities sector
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service

Woodland creation

Complete woodland creation and planting establishment services
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