A SECONDARY school in Romsey has embarked on an ambitious project to plant 820 trees. 

The Mayor of Test Valley Philip Lashbrooke and Romsey Mayor John Ray planted the first of the trees at The Romsey School at the end of last year. 

Staff and students at The Romsey School have now received 420 tree saplings donated by The Woodland Trust, which they will plant to create a wildlife corridor between the boundary fence lines.

Headteacher Annie Eagle said: "I am delighted that our students are embarking on this important project. This morning’s planting supports our aspiration to ensure that sustainability, and a moral imperative to nurture our planet, is engendered across our curriculum, leading our youngsters towards ‘ethical global citizenship." 

Hampshire Chronicle: The Romsey School will plant hundreds of trees

She said the trees will create an excellent habitat, enabling wildlife to move safely across the site whilst providing food, shelter and nesting areas.  The species are: hawthorn, dogwood, wild cherry, silver birch, rowan, hazel blackthorn, silver birch, common oak,  blackthorn, crab apple, elder, dog rose.

The Romsey School students have set up an Environment Leadership Group and it is this team of students who are in charge of the planting. 

The students have worked with The Woodland Trust to learn how to successfully plant a tree.

The next step will see every Year 7 student plant their own tree.

A further 400 saplings will arrive in the spring, and the school will welcome feeder schools to the site to engage in workshops on sustainability and help with planting. 

Geography teacher Kimberley Hallford said: "I have been working with the environment club for some time to educate others around school about the importance of trees in our environment. This is a very important project to enhance our biodiversity around the school site and contribute to the fight against climate change. We hope this will encourage other students to do the same."

She said the school plans to plant a wild meadow garden ready for spring, as well as delivering assemblies on sustainability and the importance of using refillable bottles across the site.

As part of this project, they have researched alternatives to plastic bottles and cans in school pitching their ideas to the school's senior leadership team with the aim of the school becoming a plastic-free environment by September.