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Sir Trevor Phillips OBE plants a tree for the Queens Green Canopy at GreenAcres Epping Forest

March 8, 2022

March 8, 2022

Sir Trevor Phillips with the GreenAcres Epping Forest Team and Bishop Stortford Funeral Directors, Barringtons

GreenAcres Epping Forest were joined by renowned broadcaster and journalist Sir Trevor Phillips OBE to “Plant a tree for the Jubilee” at their award-winning cemetery and ceremonial park in Epping Forest, Essex.

GreenAcres Epping Park are taking part in The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC). This unique tree planting initiative marks Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022 and invites people from across the United Kingdom to “Plant a Tree for the Jubilee”.

The Park Team are proud to be part of creating a legacy in honour of Her Majesty, The Queen’s leadership of the Nation, which will benefit future generations. They provide a unique cemetery and ceremonial park serving the members of all faiths and communities creating a special place that is both tranquil and uplifting at a time of great sadness.

Her Majesty, The Queen has serviced the UK over the past seventy years and Sir Trevor described her a “paragon of quiet dignity” when he wrote poignantly about her at the end of December 2021 for The Times:

“In January 2021 she was one of the first to get her jab, announcing cheerfully, “It didn’t hurt at all.” After the death of her husband she was back to work within weeks. I understand that she is still riding. It cannot be said too often: the woman is 95 years old.

But the abiding image of a year suffused by tears and tragedy has to be that of the Queen compelled to sit alone, by rules promulgated – and flouted – by her own ministers, to mourn the man who had been standing by her side before most of us were born. For her, there could be no comfort from her children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews. No one in their right minds would have thought twice had she bent the rules. But I have no doubt she will have been reflecting on the despair of many thousands, unable to touch a lonely parent, trapped behind a window, pressing their hands to the glass in the only gesture available to them.”

Sir Trevor shared his thoughts and very personal reasons on what it meant to him to be part of the legacy for the Platinum Jubilee: “This particular location carries three separate meanings for me. The human race faces two great challenges: how we live with our planet and how we live with each other. It is of course, the central mission at GreenAcres to preserve and enhance the natural environment, and the Green Canopy will be a huge contribution to that mission.

Second, the tree honours Her Majesty and her decades of service, in particular her role in reminding us that, with all our diversity we are one nation.

And third, this is the final home of my elder daughter, and will probably be my own. Preserving our species is not just a matter of keeping our physical beings alive; it is, even more importantly, an act of memory that keeps the human story alive, and a marker that will encourage those who come after us to tell our stories for ages to come.”

The climate change agenda and the environment are fundamental to Sir Trevor: “In my life as a journalist it is one of the central issues of the day; no week goes past without our having to address it in some way, whether in the programmes I present for Sky News or in my column for the Times.

Sky, in particular has ambitious targets for its own achievement of net zero, and the consequence is that everyone who works for us is encouraged to change how we travel, how we schedule and even how we eat and dress to use fewer and fewer resources.”

Sarah Goodey, Deputy Park Manager at GreenAcres Epping Forest said: ”Being part of QGC allows us to highlight the significant value of trees and woodlands as nature’s simple but highly effective way to clean the air we breathe, slow the impact of climate change, create important wildlife habitats and improve our general health and wellbeing.”

The GreenAcres Group recently conducted a survey of over 2000 UK residents, asking people about environmental consciousness in relation to funerals – 53% of the population stated that it was important to them.

For Sir Trevor and his family, it was paramount: “We fully understand that not everyone will have the resources to do everything we did; but we felt that it was important that everyone makes whatever contribution they can. And in practice, our desire to minimise the use of resources left us free to concentrate on what most mattered: to remember the person we loved and to care for each other.”

The new area celebrating the Queen’s Green Canopy is accessible for anyone to visit during the park opening hours which can be found on our website – https://www.greenacresgroup.co.uk/epping-park-contact/

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