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PHS Direct and The National Forest - first planting day

Published 21st April, 2011 by Neil Nixon

PHS Direct and The National Forest - first planting day

PHS Direct held its first National Forest planting day on 2 March in its area of the forest at Overseal in Derbyshire. Around 50 people – customers, suppliers and staff alike – got stuck in and planted the first 500 trees to get the site started. The day provided an opportunity to understand why PHS Direct is undertaking this project – to define its ethical trading stance and do something tangible that will be in place for many years to come.

The National Forest is a forest in the making, transforming 200 square miles of central England. Already more than 7 million trees have been planted and woodland cover has been increased from 6% to 18% since the Forest was established in the early 1990s. The eventual aim is for a third of the area to be covered by woodland to create a mosaic of farmland, open space, towns and villages, transport corridors, industrial use, waterways – all framed by woodland.

PHS Direct is committed to planting 5000 trees a year for three years at the Overseal site, with the option to continue in the future. A contribution from each box of paper sold is donated to The National Forest, and a similar donation is also being made by PHS Direct’s paper suppliers.

The National Forest was chosen as a project by PHS Direct because it is a local scheme that will enable its staff to directly engage with the project in a real and material way.

James Clark, managing director of PHS Direct, said: “I’m really excited about the start of our project, and it is great to see the trees actually going into the ground. I’m delighted that our staff and other stakeholders have been able to get to grips with what the project is all about - seeing is believing after all! We had a great time and as a bonus, the weather stayed dry!”

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