Prime Minister David Cameron connected with the roots of nature when he joined A Rocha UK Conservation Director Andy Lester and Adventure Plus chief Jon Cox for a recent tree-planting ceremony in Oxfordshire.
Mr Cameron was helping put the finishing touches to a newly expanded copse on Adventure Plus’s site. It’s the first stage of an ‘adventure base’ to enable hundreds of children enjoy nature and acquire bushcraft skills.
Adventure Plus has been working with A Rocha UK and other partners to plant more than 1,500 new trees in this wildlife-rich copse as a place for birds and animals to live – and young people to learn.
The Prime Minister discussed with Andy Lester the importance of steering youth away from computers and into the countryside. ‘We must get young people more engaged with the outdoors,’ said Mr Cameron, ‘and this project is clearly striving to do just that.’
Based at Clanfield, Adventure Plus is A Rocha UK’s newest Partner in Action and recently hosted the first partners’ retreat. The youth charity is turning 50 acres of farmland into a multi-purpose facility.
‘Mr Cameron has been very supportive of our creative approach to adventure youth work in a positive Christian environment for several years,’ said Executive Director Jon Cox. ‘He’s written a personal message of support for each of our Witney2Westminster canoe marathons since 2009. We’re delighted he’s now come to see what is unfolding at the new adventure base – and to plant an English Oak tree to complete our new copse.’
‘The tree planting has been a fantastic collaborative effort. We’re indebted to all our partners – especially A Rocha UK for technical advice and encouragement.’ Jon has since written to Mr Cameron’s constituency office with suggestions of offering young people even more support.
Two other trees were planted by James Woollard of Polythene UK and Niel Nicholson from Nicholson’s Nurseries. ‘We thank them both for donating the 1,500 trees that have made up the new copse,’ said Jon. (Pictured above – Prime Minister David Cameron with Andy Lester and left – with Jon Cox)