A diamond wood for Lewis

Loch Arnish, on Stornoway is the latest site to be named as a prestigious Diamond Wood, just one of 60 flagship sites celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Sixty prominent new Diamond Woods - each of 60 acres - with hundreds of smaller Jubilee Woods are being created across the UK, that’s the vision for the Woodland Trust’s ambitious Jubilee Woods project that aims to plant 6 million trees and involve millions of people in celebrating The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.

The new wood will be owned and managed by the Stornoway Trust and will surround Loch Arnish and back around to the River Creed, extending the woodland legacy bequeathed to the Trust.

It is the Stornoway Trust’s intention to build a bridge over the river and create a footpath linking the Castle Grounds to Loch Arnish and Prince Charlie’s cairn – a commemoration to Bonnie Prince Charlie’s landing in 1745.

Iain M MacIver, Factor to the Stornoway Trust, said: “The Stornoway Trust welcomes the opportunity to participate in the Diamond Woods project, as it will allow our community to share in celebrating our Queen’s notable achievement while hopefully building on the endeavours of our predecessors and the legacy we have inherited.

This project could help establish an iconic backdrop to an already idyllic harbour setting bringing much needed employment in the process.”

The project will commemorate the 2012 Diamond Jubilee, marking Queen Elizabeth‘s 60th year as monarch. Next to Queen Victoria in 1897, she is the only British sovereign ever to celebrate a Diamond Jubilee.

Carol Evans, Woodland Trust Scotland, said: “We are absolutely delighted that the Stornoway Trust want to work with us to develop a Diamond Wood, with its Royal connections and ambitions involving the whole community this project will be a great success. The project allows us to engage with local children, provide them with the opportunity to plant trees, engage with nature and celebrate their role in marking this historic event.”

She continues “We hope that this inspires other communities to join us in paying a very special tribute to the Queen, while at the same time creating something living and lasting to hand on to future generations. Not only is this a chance to celebrate the Queen’s reign but it’s also a chance for people to help build community spirit through creating a living asset to enjoy and be part of.” In just 10 years the trees will be taller than the average person and the woodland will be full of wildlife for many people to enjoy.”

The Woodland Trust Scotland is looking for landowners, of all kinds, to plant a Diamond or Jubilee Wood on their own land.

The project is not just open to landowners, the Trust will also be providing thousands of free Jubilee Tree packs to communities and schools across the UK.