Sheffield Council gives away 30 fruit trees to tenants

Sheffield Council's community forestry officer Angus Hunter with the fruit trees being handed out to council tentants.
Sheffield Council's community forestry officer Angus Hunter with the fruit trees being handed out to council tentants.

Sheffield Council says it hopes to promote healthy eating and conservation by giving out fruit trees to its housing tenants.

The authority offered 30 cherry or plum trees to council house residents on a first-come, first-served basis.

The trees were quickly snapped up, with all of them taken just two hours after they were made available. The offer is now closed.

The dwarf trees, costing £300 in total and sourced from a local nursery, are suitable for balconies or small gardens and will be given to people in the coming weeks.

Community forestry officer Angus Hunter said: “Fruit trees are excellent for bees and will bring local wildlife to people’s gardens and balconies.

“It’s also fun to grow your own fruit and vegetables and can help people eat more healthily.”

The council helps fund healthy eating cooking classes and community allotments which people can use to grow fruit and vegetables. It also encourages healthy eating across the city as part of its community wellbeing programme.

Sheffield’s director of public health Greg Fell said: “A healthy diet has a big impact on how well you feel.

“The old saying that an apple a day keeps the doctor away is certainly true; recent research has highlighted that fruit significantly reduces heart attack deaths.

“Healthy eating means reducing sugar and unhealthy fats and increasing the amount of fruit and vegetables you eat.

“Making healthy choices can have a big difference to how well you feel, as well as to waistlines.”

n Find out more about the council’s community wellbeing programme at www.sheffield.gov.uk/caresupport/health/community-wellbeing-programme