National Trust celebrates 125th anniversary with carbon net zero pledge

PUBLISHED: 12:01 12 January 2020

Wimpole Hall is owned by the National Trust. Picture: National Trust

Wimpole Hall is owned by the National Trust. Picture: National Trust

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Conservation charity, the National Trust - which owns the Wimpole Estate - has pledged to become carbon net zero by 2030, as it marks its 125th anniversary today.

Plans for a series of new initiatives to step up the battle against climate change were announced by director general Hilary McGrady, including the building of 20 million new trees in 10 years.

She said: "It's our 125th year and the National Trust has always been here for the benefit of everyone. That is why we are making these ambitious announcements in response to what is needed from our institution today.

"As Europe's biggest conservation charity, we have a responsibility to do everything we can to fight climate change - which poses the biggest threat to the places, nature and collections we care for.

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"People need nature now more than ever. If they connect with it then they look after it. And working together is the only way we can reverse the decline in wildlife and the challenges we face due to climate change."

Elsie Bainbridge left the Wimpole Estate to the National Trust in 1976 on her death. She was the only surviving child of Rudyard Kipling - and used substantial royalties from his books to refurbish the house - and was the wife of Captain George Bainbridge who died in 1943.

The 3,000-acre Arrington site has been owned by many families through the ages - most notably the Chicheleys from 1428-1686, and the Earls of Hardwicke from 1740 to 1894.

In her announcement about the National Trust's plans going forward, Mrs McGrady expressed concern at the disconnection between people and nature when evidence shows people's connection to the natural world is an important predictor of their health and wellbeing, as well as their willingness to act to care for the natural environment and launched a year-long campaign to inspire and connect people to their natural environment to help face down the nature crisis is also being launched by the charity today.

She said: "We have a year of activity planned from tree planting, river and beach cleaning, events that track the dawn across our places, birdwatching, picnics in the wild, cloud watching, painting, writing, creating wild art, foraging for food, walking, cycling, yoga and dancing in the great outdoors - and a celebration of Britain's very own blossom season."

For more on the National Trust go to www.nationaltrust.org.uk

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