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Stockport Council and City of Trees, the Community Forest for Greater Manchester, have secured funding from Central Government’s Nature for Climate Fund which aims to plant more than 40 million trees and restore 35,000 hectares of peatland in England to help increase biodiversity, lock up carbon and reduce our vulnerability to climate change. This will make a key contribution to the Government’s legally binding commitment to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.


The Government has also launched a pilot initiative, the Nature Recovery Network, to help address the decline in our native wildlife, currently 54 native species are at risk. Greater Manchester is one of 5 pilot areas & planting more trees will form an essential part of restoring and linking habitats so wildlife can thrive.


Planting more trees is key in our fight against climate change owing to their ability to absorb greenhouse gases, provide natural air conditioning and in particular intercept rain water to help reduce the risk of flooding. Trees are also good for air quality as they are able to capture or disperse harmful pollution. Planting more trees will form part of Stockport’s response to delivering on their Declaration of a Climate Emergency.


In Stockport 8 sites have been identified where increasing tree cover will provide a range of wildlife and amenity benefits. One of those sites is adjacent to the River Tame near Willow Grove Cemetery. These planting locations have been carefully selected to ensure that they will not cause detriment to existing habitat space and the trees will be set back from footpaths to make sure that sight lines are maintained. Two Government mapping sites that host habitat data have been checked to ensure that the planting proposals do not conflict with any key habitats and the Greater Manchester Archaeological Advisory Service has also been consulted to make sure that there is not anything of historical significance in the planting area.


Event at Brunswick Cemetery 31st August 2019 by FOSC


The purpose of the day was to show off the renovation of an old cemetery in the centre of Portwood roundabout Stockport.


Our first visit to the site was February 2016, initially clearing the place from debris removing self-seeded saplings, pruning trees, amd cutting the grassed area. Whilst clearing the site we uncovered the footprint of the chapel this area was covered with paving stones over time some have been raised slightly with roots of self-seeding saplings making some places uneven.


FOSC applied for funding to renovate the flagged area and install two interpretation boards on the site and would like to say thank you to the Stockport’s Council officers for the support and advice given to the group enabling them to carry out this project successfully.    Thanks also go to  Stockport’s Local Area Committee, Tesco and Vernon Building Society.


“Without the help of the cadets and staff from Greater Manchester ACF over the past few years, we could not have achieved as much as we have.  They have worked tirelessly in all weathers and are a credit to the Army Cadet Force and the community.




Centennial Commemoration Event at Willow Grove Cemetery, 10th November 2018


Since 2014, we have been highlighting the lives of soldiers who served in the Great War of 1914 -1918 and who lie buried at Willow Grove Cemetery in Reddish.

2014 Jean-Francoise Vermeulen

2015 Arthur and William Scott

2016 Jack Horrocks,

2017 Joseph Lister VC

2018 Ellis Adshead and William Wright.


This year, our final event, told the stories of Ellis Adshead and William Wright and unveiled a WGCM for Jean-Francoise Vermeulen the first soldier to be buried in Willow Grove 104 years ago.


Ellis Adshead

Ellis lived with his parents and 8 siblings at 17 Norfolk St., Portwood Stockport and was just 21 when he enlisted on 4th October 1915. After safely completing 2.5 years active service he was granted leave and returned home on 5th December 1918 but he caught a chill and died just four days later of bronchial pneumonia.

William Wright

William was born in 1895 and lived at 78 Lancashire Hill, Heaton Norris, Stockport. In the final days of the war many battles still raged as the German Army undertook a stiff fighting retreat William was killed on 4th November 1918

The event at Willow Grove opened at 10am to a medley of tunes played by Stockport Silver Band and shortly afterwards, Councillor Linda Holt (The Mayor of Stockport) and the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Greater Manchester arrived.   The parade was led by piper Steve Plumber and there were representatives from  serving and ex-serving members of our forces with local cadet forces.  As the parade marched around the cemetery and came to a halt at the WGC Screen Wall,  Geoff Baines, of the Royal Regiment of the Lancashire Fusiliers Band, played “The Last Post” in honour to all those who gave their lives in the Great War.  After this the Mayor and other dignitaries proceeded to the grave of Jean-Francoise Vermeulen to unveil a new WGCM holding Belgium flag Stephen Liversage for CWGC and John Meesus Belgium Consulate, in  picture of unveiling the stone.


See a video of the whole event on Youtube - click

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