As part of Swansea University’s 100th birthday celebrations, staff and student volunteers have planted 50 oak trees across the University’s Singleton and Bay campuses.
The Centenary Oaks Project aims to establish successors to the veteran oak trees that were planted 150 years ago at Singleton when the site was the home of the Vivian family, who made Swansea famous for its copper output during the region’s golden age of industry.
Benjamin Sampson, Biodiversity Officer at the University, led the initiative. He said: “Planting 50 oak trees across both campuses acknowledges the debt that we owe to the Vivian’s planting and will help to ensure that students, staff, and the wider community, will enjoy similar benefits when the University celebrates its second centenary.
“No other tree hosts anywhere near the diversity of life, and none is as important in our culture as the Welsh Oak. The oak trees at Swansea’s Singleton site are now beginning their slow decline, and although they will provide a home for a vast array of wildlife and enjoyment for people for many decades to come, when the University celebrates its second centenary they will be well past their prime.
“Veteran trees cannot be replaced in the short term; oaks planted today will take at least 100 years to reach maturity. While both campuses have had many trees planted in recent times, and these will provide wide-ranging environmental benefits, most are relatively short-lived varieties that will be long gone before the oaks.”