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Cheadle orchards helping to sow seeds of nature recovery

Helping nature to recover and increasing biodiversity are just some of the ways we can tackle climate change - and the community orchards being planted across the Moorlands are playing a key role.

The first two orchards in Cheadle were planted at the weekend at Glebe Road and Beswick Close with more locations to come.

Councillor Joe Porter, Cabinet member for Climate Change and Biodiversity at Staffordshire Moorlands District Council, joined volunteers from the local community, the Lions and 2nd Cheadle Scout Group to plant the trees.

He said: "Increasing biodiversity is a major contributor to tackling climate change and it's a central element of our nature recovery plans. These two orchards in Cheadle are the latest sites to be planted as part of the bigger network of local orchards in communities across the Moorlands.

"As well as playing a key environmental role, trees and improved green spaces like this have such value for our wellbeing so it's great to see so many members of the local community getting involved.

"I'm particularly pleased that so many young people are taking an active role in planting and caring for these orchards as they will be the ones who have to live with the consequences if we don't take steps and positive actions now to deal with our changing climate.

Jess Kirby, 2nd Cheadle Scout Group Leader said "It was a great opportunity for the scouts to get involved in this wonderful project, especially with it being so close to home. Helping increase biodiversity and protecting nature is something our group is keen to do and actively looks to include in all our activities.

"This particular activity has also helped many of the Scouts achieve their World Challenge badge which is all about exploring the world from your doorstep. Caring for the Orchard in the future will provide a legacy for our group and a chance for them to learn all about nature as the seasons change."

Councillor Joe Porter went on to say "Here in the Moorlands we're determined to do all we can to meet our target of carbon neutrality by 2030 and to leave our environment in a better state than we inherited."

Since adopting a Green Infrastructure Strategy in 2018, the Council has worked with Staffordshire Wildlife Trust to map the District and prepare a delivery plan which includes an ambitious list of around 60 potential projects.

The community orchards are amongst the first of these projects to be delivered.

The council has previously planted orchards in five locations in Leek and volunteers from Biddulph have been busy in recent weeks planting orchards at multiple sites. There are further sites in Cheadle to be planted, with more planned on parish council owned sites in other villages across the Moorlands.

You can read more about what the Council is doing to mitigate the impact of climate change at