Welcome to the LTOA website. The London Tree Officers Association (LTOA) constitutes the professional & technical voice for London's trees & woodlands. Its aim is to enhance the management of the Capital's trees.
We hope that you find the LTOA website both interesting & informative. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
The benefits that all of London’s trees provide have been given a monetary value in the London i-Tree Eco Project report published yesterday. The quantity of these benefits – such as air quality improvement and carbon storage – is the result of the world’s largest survey of a city region involving hundreds of trained volunteers.
Most people appreciate the beauty of London’s trees but may not know, or tend to take for granted, the benefits that London’s urban forest provides for both people and nature. The i-Tree report, sponsored by Unilever, gives us a much better understanding of the structure and value of London’s urban forest. It is a method that is recognised worldwide and enables comparison with other cities. The information produced enables us to make better plans to manage London’s trees and highlights the need for continued tree planting to increase tree canopy cover over London.
The survey found that:
The report highlights that there are a wide range of tree species - not just native trees but trees from around the world - that are suited to London conditions. However, at a more local level there are vulnerable landscapes that are currently reliant on one or two tree species, such as some parts of central London dominated by the iconic London plane. In order to reduce the risk of large numbers of trees being lost within a short time, planting of a wider species range is needed.
The report calls for everyone to recognise and support the multiple benefits that trees provide for London and to make their own contribution to protecting and enhancing London’s tree cover. This will help ensure that London continues to be a green city for future generations by planting trees in gardens, supporting tree planting by others, supporting organisations that promote and protect London’s trees.
Environment Minister, Rory Stewart, said: “Our trees and forests have long been central to British identity. But we are beginning to understand with even more precision, just how important they are to our air quality, our health and our happiness. This is a fantastic initiative. And it sits very well alongside our drive to plant an additional 11 million trees in this parliament, and to support green spaces across the country.”
Charlotte Carroll, Unilever UK Sustainability and Communications Director, commented: “The findings of this report provide clear evidence of the importance of trees in the fight against climate change and of their value to our society in helping to deliver a more sustainable future. At Unilever we're working on this important issue through our brightFuture movement and with the UN Climate Conference, COP21 in progress, now is the time to engage in the importance of trees in our everyday lives.”
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: “London is one of the greenest, leafiest cities on the planet and as this survey proves, our canopy does a ‘tree mendous’ job of lowering pollution, alleviating flood water and boosting our environment.”
Craig Harrison, Forestry Commission London Manager said: “The i-Tree report shows some of the ways in which London’s trees enhance our daily lives, and many of the trees we enjoy today are the legacy of past tree planting. But London’s trees face challenges such as development pressures, climate change and disease. With the expected increase in London’s population the need for more trees will increase - so we need to protect existing trees and plant new trees - to ensure London remains an enjoyable place to live, work and visit”
London iTree survey - The report is available from:
Stephen Lacey of the Telegraph attended the last LTOA seminar on 5 November 2015 about big trees and wrote the following article on 29 November 2015 mentioning two of our members Andy Tipping, Arboricultural Manager at LB Barnet with the Dawn Redwood avenue and Tom Campbell, Tree Officer at Hackney with the Tree Champions initiative.
Government approval has today been granted to two brand new Trailblazer apprenticeship standards which are set to benefit employers in the forestry and arboriculture sector.
The Arborist and Forest Operative apprenticeship standards were developed over the past 12 months through a comprehensive consultation and hundreds of hours of input from over 40 organisations, encompassing the full spectrum of the industries involved. They have now been approved at Westminster and lead the way in the government’s drive for apprenticeship reform in England.
Trailblazer apprenticeships are led by employers for employers and aim to ensure apprenticeships are tailored to the needs of industry. The standards list the key skills, knowledge and behaviours apprentices should achieve in order to complete their apprenticeship.
Apprenticeship programmes, based on these standards, will give employers the confidence that their apprentices will develop the skills they need to make meaningful contribution to their company.
Timothy Leavers of Euroforest Limited commented ‘The dual pathway forest operative standard provides specific training in the two main forestry disciplines of establishment and harvesting, allowing an employer to tailor their training to the company’s core business, and provide a clear focus for the apprentice.’
Simon Rotheram of Beechwood Trees and Landscapes Ltd added ‘We are pleased to see that the time and effort put in by a number of companies and individuals is coming to fruition, this hard work has formed an apprenticeship for arboriculture that will provide individuals with the training necessary to make them a useful asset to the industry and their employers...exciting times for the development of budding arborists are ahead.’
The final two standards, Horticulture & Landscape Operative plus Horticulture and Landscape Supervisor have recently been submitted into the government approvals process.
The next stage of the process has already commenced and assessment plans are being written for each occupation. These are employers’ opportunity to explain how to test the apprentice’s expertise. Draft plans were shared with 40 training and assessment providers during a meeting at the end of September. The valuable insights from this meeting will be discussed by the industries involved over the next two months and plans devised accordingly. It is hoped that delivery of the new apprenticeships will begin in the middle of next year.