Arboricultural Association and the National Association of Tree Officers to work in partnership

A more "active partnership" is rolling out between the Arboricultural Association and the National Association of Tree Officers (NATO) to give the sector a stronger voice.

Arboricultural Association director Nick Eden. Image: AA
Arboricultural Association director Nick Eden. Image: AA

The two bodies are working in partnership for the first time at this year's Arboricultural Association conference and aim to develop greater ties in an ongoing mission to raise arboriculture's profile with Government.

The NATO will run a half-day session at the Arboricultural Association's national amenity conference in Manchester on 12-15 September. Chairman Mike Volp told HW the idea was to identify common ground rather than "pulling in different directions".

"We have been wanting to build bridges with the Arboricultural Association for a while," he explained. "Everyone is of the same mind and that is part and parcel of putting the industry forward.

"Although we now have ammunition (of the value of trees) through Trees in Towns II, budget cuts are still a worry. We are all for developing a bigger voice, rather than a few groups shouting independently."

Arboricultural Association director Nick Eden said the partnership ensured tree officers were "fully catered for" at the annual conference, and the NATO could gain from the publicity and marketing.

"There is a lot of synergy between the two organisations and a lot of common ground," he added.

The NATO will take over the conference programme on the morning of 14 September. Volp said tree officers only able to get the budget to visit the conference on one day would have a dedicated session.

He added: "We are actively looking at more partnership with the Arboricultural Association so we are not duplicating efforts."

Among those due to speak at the conference are Institute of Chartered Foresters executive director Shireen Chambers, Forestry Commission London tree and woodland framework manager Jim Smith and Liverpool City Council tree and woodland manager Peter Howson.

International speakers include Canadian consultant Philip Van Wassenaer and Italian thermal imaging expert Giorgio Catena.

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