Surrey is Britain’s leafiest county according to the first ever complete tree count in England and Wales.
Exhaustive tree survey carried out using latest aerial mapping technology
Highest concentration of trees was found in Greater London and Surrey
Bracknell Forest, in Berkshire, and New Forest, in Hampshire, are the only forests to feature in the top ten of the National Tree Map by Bluesky
Experts have carried out the exhaustive tree survey using the latest aerial mapping technology, showing there are 280 million trees in the UK.
It revealed that the highest concentration of trees was not in rural areas but surprisingly in Greater London and Surrey.
The first ever complete tree count in England and Wales has been carried out showing there are 280 million – with the most densely covered areas in Surrey. The new tree map shows dark green over London and surrounding areas, representing a densely tree populated area
The resulting map shows seven of the county’s districts were in the top ten, with large swathes of dark green – representing a densely tree populated area – in London and the surrounding commuter belt.
The new tree map shows large light patches where you’d expect to see trees in the countryside – and large dark green over London and surrounding areas.
People behind the research says Surrey features so heavily because of the large gardens – where in more rural areas trees tend to be cut down for agricultural reasons.
Rather than rural areas, its the residential estates and urban streets that are more heavily covered by trees, researchers found using photographs taken from planes.
The Surrey Heath district of Surrey is 40 per cent covered, making it the most densely populated area.
The resulting map shows seven of the county’s districts were in the top ten, with large swathes of dark green – representing a densely tree populated area – surprisingly in London and the surrounding commuter belt
Bracknell Forest, in Berkshire, and New Forest, in Hampshire, are the only forests to feature in the top ten, according to the National Tree Map by Bluesky.
The company’s technical director, James Eddy, said: ‘If you think about driving around Surrey, it’s the big gardens and big houses with all the trees.
‘It’s strange – you’d think the big forests would be in the top ten. But the forests tend to be in more rural areas which are heavily farmed.
‘They have taken out huge rows of trees and grown crops – that doesn’t go on in Surrey.
‘We were also quite surprised at London and how green it is – most people think cities are devoid of trees.’
People behind the research says Surrey features so heavily because of the large gardens – where in more rural areas trees tend to be cut down for agricultural reasons. Pictured is Box Hill, Surrey
Aerial view of Beaulieu, Hampshire one of the areas in the UK most densely covered in trees
Two heavily farmed Lincolnshire districts, Boston and South Holland, rank bottom with 2 per cent tree coverage and neighbouring Cambridgeshire districts Fenland and East Cambridgeshire are also in the bottom 10.
Waverly, in Surrey, is shortly behind Surrey Heath and Neath Port Talbot, near Swansea, topped the Welsh chart with 32 per cent tree coverage.
Bluesky’s managing director Rachel Tidmarsh added: ‘It’s really interesting to be able to blow some preconceived ideas out of the window and dispel many popular misconceptions that surround the way we view the places where we work, live and play.’
Researchers also found that England and Wales are covered by nearly 8,000 square miles of trees, an area large enough to cover Slovenia.
The Leicestershire-based company also calculated the height of each tree using 3D imaging and will soon release date for Scotland.
Bluesky hopes the data will be of use to a range of organisations including insurance companies and councils.
SURREY, BRACKNELL AND WOKING: TOP TEN LEAFIEST AREAS OF UK
1. Surrey Heath (Surrey) 40.6pc
2. Waverley (Surrey) 40.2
3. Bracknell Forest (Berkshire) 39.8
4. Runnymede (Surrey) 37.8
5. Woking (Surrey) 36.9
6. Mole Valley (Surrey) 36.8
7. Elmbridge (Surrey) 36.2
8. Guildford (Surrey) 35.8
9. Neath Port Talbot (Neath Port Talbot) 32.0
10. New Forest (Hampshire) 31.4
… AND THEIR COMPARATIVELY CONCRETE COUNTERPARTS
1. South Holland (Lincolnshire) 2.1
2. Boston (Lincolnshire) 2.1
3. Fenland (Cambridgeshire) 2.3
4. Barrow-in-Furness (Cumbria) 2.5
5. Rochford (Essex) 4.2
6. City of London (Greater London) 4.4
7. Thanet (Kent) 4.4
8. East Riding of Yorkshire (Yorkshire) 4.9
9. East Cambridgeshire (Cambridgeshire) 5.3
10. Craven (North Yorkshire) 5.6