As a business we regularly share opportunities for our staff and teams to volunteer with projects and causes they're passionate about. The following is a personal account from a Legacy Forest planting day from Andy Barnett, Sector and Digital Marketing Manager.

Planting a tree, building a legacy

I was lucky enough to spend a day contributing to Severn Trent Water's 'Commonwealth Games Legacy Forest'. This was all part of Ground Control's ongoing partnership with Severn Trent Water, and in support of Severn Trent Water's efforts to support a carbon neutral Commonwealth Games as the ‘Official Nature and Carbon Neutral Supporter of Birmingham 2022 Games’. 

Whilst planting days vary in size, partners, location, volunteers and weather, here’s what to expected for anyone whose 'normal day' is inside a home office.

My Planting Day

Importantly like all good days, we were provided with tea and coffee. So firstly, a huge thank you to Severn Trent because I planned poorly and didn’t bring one. Secondly, everything needed to plant a tree was provided – the tools, the knowhow, the tree - all ready to go thanks to Ivan Prescott (Ground Control Contract Supervisor).

To start everyone was fully briefed. This included health and safety,  information on how to plant trees properly and specifically for this day given one golden rule - “Don’t go up the hill empty handed”. This was because our site was at the top of the hill and the equipment was at the bottom. As a group, everyone took the stakes, trees and tools up the hill, and we were ready to plant.

Within 30 minutes of tree planting, our section of the forest is taking shape and I was meeting new people, like proud Stokie Carole who volunteered because she “had the time being retired, and wanted to plant a to have a positive impact on the future”, and Carole’s friend who joined “because Carole made me”.

 We were also joined by our sector lead for Utilities, Energy and Inland Water Stewart Hartley who added:

One of my proudest days in the 15 years working alongside Severn Trent Water.  Being involved in this amazing project planting trees, enhancing the local environment and creating a legacy for generations to come

Severn Trent Water and Ground Control Staff Members

We planted a combination of native species that would complement the biodiversity and nature in the area, and you’ll have the opportunity to plant as many, or as little trees as you want. 

Without a doubt it was the best way to spend a Tuesday, and it was the ultimate office for a day. The sun was out, the location was stunning and all the people were great company. I’d recommend taking the opportunity to experience Human Nature: At its Best by planting a tree.



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