Think trees and shrug off the blues!
Published Friday 25th January 2013
As we're coming to the end of what is called the most miserable week of the year, Ipswich Borough Council is trying to raise everyone's spirits with a reminder that trees can make you happy!
The third Monday in January is cited as the most depressing day in the calendar and the current weather might not be helping, but Forestry Commission research says living next to trees makes people happier - people with high nearby tree cover are said to be happier than those with few or no trees. In particular, they are more likely to say they were feeling relaxed and thinking clearly than those with no trees.
Author and arboriculturalist Adam Winson says: "The results of the study show that our urban trees are not just something to make an area look nice but they may actually be making people happier." Other research shows trees and open spaces reduce feelings of stress and that the more often a person visits one, the less often he or she will report stress-related illnesses.
This view was echoed today by Ipswich Borough Council's tree expert Andy Whalley: "Our town is blessed by beautiful parks and open spaces with some magnificent trees and we have an on-going planting policy to increase our tree cover. We also run a successful tree sponsorship scheme, so residents can get in touch and, who knows, it might lift their spirits next year and in the future when they see the fruits of their labours."
To find out more about the tree sponsorship scheme please contact Steve Leech on 01473 433534.
Did you know?
A survey of 147 English towns and cities found that on average the tree canopy cover was just 8.5%. Ipswich's tree canopy cover is currently a green 12%.