One of the most important activities I am responsible for as the executive councillor for Planning Policy and Open Spaces is the Cambridge Canopy Project, which is planting 2,000 trees across the city between 2019 and 2022.
This is part of a bigger European project to roll-out ‘green infrastructure’, or natural solutions, to make cities more resilient to the likely impacts that will be brought about by climate change.
This week we hit two milestones – the 1,000th and 1,024th trees – so it seemed fitting to make an occasion of these milestones and celebrate accordingly, and I’m really pleased that we are going to commemorate one of the city’s best known residents in the process.
The 1,000th tree – a magnolia ‘Galaxy’ – was planted in Stourbridge Grove, adding spring colour with its large pink flowers, and today (Jan 29) we are planting the 1024th in Christ’s Pieces. This will be the Turing Tree, named for the mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing.
It’s January 2021, but our times are so strange and altered that there is no real sense of the weeks or months passing, and only the bare trees and frosty mornings have revealed that it’s winter. The new year has begun, but with muted celebrations and no real transition. More online meetings involved friends and family and fewer were about Council matters, but that was the only real difference.
But now, with vaccinations rolling out, there is perhaps a sense that we will find our way back to a way of living that does not require us to stay apart and stay home. And in that spirit, I wish everyone well for the year ahead.