Kingston University Biodiversity Action Group

28-11-11 : Project xmas tree!

The official Kingston University Christmas trees are even more green this year...

The University was in need of 15 Christmas trees to bring some festive decoration to the campuses. The question was: what would be the most sustainable method of sourcing them? The answer came from the Surrey Wildlife Trust, who manage a number of heathlands which are overrun by Scot's Pine trees...

A field of Scot's pine trees, you can see the heather trying to peek through from beneath!

Lowland heath is a very rare habitat which has declined at a very fast rate in the UK due to urban development, historic forestry practices and human neglect. This is exactly what has happened at the site which we visited: Rapidly growing Scot's Pine trees were planted for timber after the second world war, but have since become a nuisance as they have spread their seed across a vast area of heath. This means that the traditional heath landscape of heathers and gorse, and its associated bird and insect species are suffering as a result. Animal grazing and land cultivation is not the industry it once was in Surrey, and so now volunteers are needed to roll up their sleeves and clear the encroaching scrub!

With this in mind, and armed with loppers and bow saws, we attacked as many of these trees as possible.

Whilst chopping as many of the trees as possible, we also all kept an eye out for trees which were good specimens for us to take back to university with us!

We found loads of great trees, and if you keep an eye out around the University you might just spot one.

Loading up the trees to take back to Kingston

Say 'Christmas pudding'!

Kingston University Christmas trees were brought to you by Kusco, Estates, the Sustainability Hub, Surrey Wildlife Trust, the Green Team and of course all the hard working volunteers!!


  1. Just want to say many thanks to all of you for all of your hard work yesterday! Clearing the pine scrub will, over time, make a real difference to the health of the heathland habitat and its associated species. And you guys should have some cracking trees for Christmas!

    James - Ranger for Barossa

  2. It was a brilliant event. The trees are now up and they look glorious. Enjoy them!

    Well done & thank you to everyone for getting involved.

    Jana Bentley - KUSCO