SCHOOLS and communities in Somerset are being urged to do their part in re-treeing the county by taking advantage of an offer from the Woodland Trust.

The trust is giving away hundreds of thousands of trees for deliveries in March and November.

The opportunities for this autumn will open on January 15 and will close as soon as all the trees are allocated.

As this offer operates on a first come, first served basis, those interested are asked to act promptly to secure trees for the upcoming planting season.

For more information, interested parties can visit

The free tree packs have been generously funded by lead partners Sainsbury's, Lloyds Bank, OVO Energy, Bank of Scotland and Sofology.

The Woodland Trust assures the application process is straightforward.

Assistance and guidance are provided by Somerset Council’s woodland creation officers on any tree and hedgerow planting associated issues.

Any queries can be directed to woodland creation officers at or

The officers' roles are funded entirely by a successful bid to the department for environment, food, and rural affairs.

The strategy projects a plan to plant new trees and create woodlands across 240 hectares annually until 2033.

Currently, Somerset's tree coverage is nearly 8 per cent, approximately half the national average.

Hence, the endeavour to increase this coverage forms a crucial facet of the council’s intentions to attain Net Zero.

Councillor Dixie Darch, lead member for environment and climate change, said: "This is an exciting opportunity for schools and communities across Somerset to get involved in helping to increase our woodland coverage.

"Whether it’s planting one tree or several, you can make a difference by uniting with your school friends or neighbours to plant trees for free and help change happen."

Prospective applicants need to be sensitive to the needs of the chosen plot or land area, raising the right tree in the right place.

The application will require the six-digit grid reference for the proposed planting area, obtained using OS Maps, and permission from the landowner.

Further information including FAQs can also be found on The Woodland Trust website.

The site offers an array of resources, such as a planning tool, planting advice and interactive activities, helpful for community groups and schools.