Creating Nature’s Corridors (CNC) is on a mission to rewild corridors of land in the UK. Good News Shared speaks to founder, Vhari Russell, on her charity with the sole purpose of planting trees to rebalance the natural habitat. With a pledge to plant 10,000 trees or hedging plants across the UK a year, CNC is at the helm making green spaces greener. The goal is to encourage biodiversity and carbon capture as well as create an improved living environment for local communities.
A life-long foodie running a food marketing agency, Vhari enjoyed the great doors and nature as did her brother Rory. In October 2018, at just 37 years old her brother tragically died of Sudden Adult Death Syndrome. Rory was a carpenter and created amazing structures from green oak.
“It made me question what my legacy would be and what people would say about me when I died. It really made me think, what can I do to make the world a better place for my three children, his two children and my sister’s daughter and other kids?“
As a close family, Rory shared Vhari’s passion for the great outdoors. To keep Rory’s legacy alive, Vhari’s vision is to plant oak trees to replace the ones used by Rory in his woodcraft, along with other trees and hedging to recreate the remarkable rural landscapes for which the UK is renowned.
“We want to do it for biodiversity as well as carbon capture flood prevention. We’re starting where I live in Cambridgeshire, the least wooded county in the country. The community’s been really affected by the A14, a major trunk road from east to west. And we’ve had lanes of traffic put in the back side of our village, which as result has ripped out huge swathes of corridors of nature we previously enjoyed.”
CNC teamed up with those who share the same passion for protecting nature, working with the likes of tree guardians, farmers, landowners and estate owners. Over 500 trees had been planted at Saffron Grange Vineyard in Little Walden and Vhari says CNC plans on planting more later this month. Also in partnership with eco-friendly packaging company NaturePac, CNC will plant a tree with every box of recyclable cups purchased. Community spirit is at the heart of the charity as they’ve worked with the local community planting trees with Brampton School and Hemingford Grey School.
On how the general public can have a say in residential development affecting green spaces, Vhari says “I think we have to fight back as a community and, stand up to those authorities. We’ve got currently three or four developments on in our village. And we need to have conversations with them, we need to make sure that if they rip out hedging, they are replacing it under clause 106. When you do a development, you have to give back certain elements to the community, whether that be sponsoring football team or donating some stuff to school. But actually there needs to be a green element in that pledge and within that there’s needs to be allocated cash, because planting an extra 500-600 trees really makes a difference. I think we need to start shifting the momentum to developers to say actually ‘we need rainwater harvesting. As part of a standard build, we need solar panels, we need these bits to protect our planet, and future proof our accommodation and living and we all need to live leave a lighter footprint on the planet.’ It’s just about making those choices.”
In more recent developments, CNC is in talks surrounding planting thousands of trees in Northumberland as well as planting more trees around a racecourse. Not to mention more charity partnerships on the horizon, and in other news, the charity has launched an art competition encouraging paintings, drawings and graphic designs of your favourite trees. The competition is open to all with the closing date for entries is midnight on the 31st of March 2022.
To pledge donations, sign up to the newsletter or even roll up your sleeves and start digging, visit Creating Nature’s Corridors.