Swapping sauces and spices for spades to ‘root’ for Derbyshire

Posted by: Belinda Hargreaves

Wed 13th March 2024

Staff at a food product development company in Derbyshire have been swapping sauces and spices for spades to ‘root’ for the county.
The green-fingered project by Griffith Foods in Somercotes was part of Derbyshire County Council’s bid to get the community to plant one million trees by 2030.
And the council is reminding residents and other local businesses that there is still time to get more trees in the ground during the current planting season.
A spokesman for the council said: “There’s just three weeks left of the current tree planting season – so if you’re looking to add some extra greenery to your garden, now’s the time to get digging.
“You can find hints and tips on tree planting on our Million Trees website. And don’t forget to record your tree on the website too so that it can be counted towards our target of getting a million trees planted in Derbyshire by 2030.”
The spokesman continued: “Staff at a food product development company in Somercotes swapped sauces and spices for spades last week to support the project.
“Eight staff from Griffith Foods, on Cotes Park Industrial Estate, turned out to plant trees at Brook Park – a 37-hectare site with specially recreated limestone grassland on the site of the former Shirebrook Colliery.
“As well as donating £2,500 towards the cost of the trees, the team helped to plant 600 saplings at Brook Park with the support of local charity Groundwork which helps to manage the site on behalf of landowners The Land Trust.
“Thanks to their efforts, the total number of trees planted and recorded as part of the project since June 2021 now stands at more than 408,000.”
Bill Varney, Principal Research and Development Technologist at Griffith Foods, said: “At Griffith Foods we like to give back to the local community where we can. This year we decided that one of the areas we would like to help contribute towards was the local countryside and giving employees more opportunities to volunteer.
“The Million Trees project is an amazing initiative that Griffith Foods was happy to donate towards, meaning that we were able to donate a considerable number of trees, and help plant them.
“A team of eight people from the company had an amazing few hours getting their hands dirty and plant 600 saplings in the local area, helping revive old mining ground into a habitat for nature.”
Leader of Derbyshire County Council, councillor Barry Lewis, who assisted with the tree planting, said: “This is a great example of what can be achieved when the community comes together and I’d like to say a huge thank you to Griffith Foods and Groundwork for their generous support.
“Every single tree counts towards the target of planting a million trees across Derbyshire to help protect the environment for future generations and tackle the effects of climate change.
“So whether you’ve volunteered as part of a large-scale planting project or simply planted a tree in your garden at home, please record your tree on our website so that it can be added to the total.”

Pictured standing from the left: Steve Buxton and Jackie Walton from Griffith Foods, Jane Mifflin from Groundwork, Jason Gill from Griffith Foods, Rod Whiteman, Leader of Derbyshire County Council councillor Barry Lewis, Ruth Marshall from Derbyshire County Council, Rebecca Godecharle and Sarah Spencer from Griffith Foods, Thomas Beardmore and Melissa Underwood from Groundwork). At the front from the left are Jessica Nunn, Bill Varney and Kev Hardy, all from Griffith Foods.

For further information about the county council’s tree project, go to here

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