Army Cadets from Staffordshire have been helping to create a lasting green legacy for future generations by taking part in a mass tree planting initiative for a new woodland.

Luke Sedzikowski, the owner of Brockton Hall in Eccleshall, partnered with the Woodland Trust to develop a new area of woodland on his land.  With the support of the Trust he is aiming to plant 1,400 native tree saplings, including aspen, alder, crab apple, oak, rowan and silver birch, across a one hectare area.

Enlisting the help of keen cadets locally from C (Stafford) Company at Staffordshire and West Midlands (North Sector) Army Cadet Force (ACF), the cadets were taught how to stake and plant the trees, working together as a team to plant approximately 800 trees in one day.Aerial shot of the new woodland

As well as learning practical planting skills and increasing their knowledge of native tree species, the scheme has given the cadets chance to work on a key community project as part of the wider Army Cadet Force training syllabus.

Cadets planting treesWith the addition of the new trees and hedgerows, it is hoped that the woodland will provide habitats for wildlife and contribute to tackling the climate crisis.  Currently the Trust is aiming to support an increase in woodland cover from its current cover of 13% land area, to 19% in 2050.

Landowners, communities and volunteers across the UK are encouraged to play their part in reaching this target.

As a local business owner in Stoke-on-Trent, Luke is keen to support Staffordshire’s countryside and woodlands.  Commenting on the scheme, Luke explained, “I decided to join the Woodland Trust scheme as I would like to do as much as I can to help the environment. We recently moved to the area and had space for one hectare of woodland.

“It was such a help to get the local cadets on board with the project. Planting 1,400 trees was a huge task and I was very impressed with the way all the cadets got involved and helped to plant approximately 800 trees in just one day.”

Cadets securing new saplingsCadet Executive Officer at Staffordshire ACF, Major Kevin O’Riordan, added, “This has been an ideal experience for the cadets to engage in a worthwhile project that is very much at the forefront of everyone’s concerns about shaping the environment and contributing to managing climate change, as the trees will develop and create a sustainable woodland and habitat. This with the thousands of Woodland Trust projects across the country benefiting both community and nature.”

Staffordshire and West Midlands (North Sector) ACF has 38 detachments within the Staffordshire and north West Midlands area.  Home to over 1,200 cadets supported by 200 adult volunteers, it gives young people aged 12 – 18 years old the opportunity to learn new skills, gain vocational qualifications, take part in adventures and overnight expeditions – inspiring the next generation of young people.

Find out more about Staffordshire and West Midlands (North Sector) Army Cadet Force at

Find your nearest cadet unit on our unit finder.


Published 02/03/2022