On Thursday 6th and Monday 10th October, Belzona employees took part in two acorn collections in support of local Harrogate wildlife initiatives. Across the two days, staff collected over 100kg of acorns from ancient and veteran oak trees at Jacob Smith Park, Knaresborough and Ripley Castle, as part of a community project organised by Yorkshire wildlife organisation, KindleWoods and the White Rose Forest, the community forest for North and West Yorkshire and one of Belzona’s chosen charities for 2022.

Belzona staff thoroughly enjoyed the acorn collection at Jacob Smith Park, Knaresborough
Belzona staff thoroughly enjoyed the acorn collection at Jacob Smith Park, Knaresborough
It was great to visit Ripley Castle to collect acorns on behalf of KindleWoods and the White Rose Forest
It was great to visit Ripley Castle to collect acorns on behalf of KindleWoods and the White Rose Forest

Ancient oaks are over 400 years old and have adapted well to the local environment, while veteran oaks are between 150-300. The acorns collected by staff were then taken to a tree nursery to be sorted and grown into saplings. In two years, the young oak trees will be planted at a location close to the original collection sites, to grow the next generation of oak woodland.

The acorn picking was one of many fundraising and environmental activities staff members will be taking part in as part of Belzona’s three-year partnership with the White Rose Forest. This is the community forest for North and West Yorkshire, working in partnership with local authorities, landowners, businesses and communities to increase woodland across the region and improve our natural environment.

Belzona took part in the initiative as part of the Company’s 1% Club scheme, which enables staff to spend 1% of their working year undertaking voluntary work. The acorn collection was driven by a collaboration between Belzona’s Mental Health and Environmental Committees due to the Company’s commitment to both sustainability and mental wellbeing.

Lily Alexander-Pike and Natalie Carpenter, members of Belzona’s Environmental Committee and organisers of the collection, said: “It was a really enjoyable experience and it was great to do our bit for the local environment. 1000 hundred-year-old oaks bring less biodiversity to their community than one 1000-year oak, making it hugely important to continue the trees’ genetic legacy.”

Creating a sustainable future is hugely important to our Company, so the acorn collection was the perfect opportunity to help to achieve this.

Lily Alexander-Pike

Corporate Development Coordinator, Belzona

Staff enjoyed a well-earned tea break after collecting over 100kg of acorns

The events were managed by White Rose Forest partner, KindleWoods, a not-for-profit organisation which aims to use the power of nature to bring mental health benefits to the local population. Spending time outdoors has been shown to have a beneficial impact on mental health, so tree planting initiatives aim to make nature accessible to more people in Yorkshire.

We felt energised and eager to gather as many acorns as possible, walking through the beautiful scenery around the castle, seeing the lush meadows, the glistening lake of ducks and magnificent oaks all around.

Natalija Skrlec

Receptionist, Belzona

It was great to get out in a natural environment, breathing the fresh air and just listening to the quiet. Listening to birdsong and taking in the fresh air is a great way to relax and chill out.

Tim Jewitt

Administrative Manager, Belzona


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