Two Emmaus communities, Emmaus Hertfordshire and Emmaus Brighton & Hove, have received trees from the Queen’s Green Canopy, a unique tree-planting initiative created to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022.

The communities join over 300 organisations across the UK that were chosen as recipients of these special trees.

On 11 November, Emmaus Hertfordshire held a planting ceremony attended by His Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Robert Voss CBE CStJ, and Lady Virginia Cecil, a patron of Emmaus. Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Voss said, “This is really very special – it is in memory of Her Majesty the Queen, an incredible monarch. And it’s really quite special that it’s going to be here, hopefully for generations to come, and when they look at it, to remember Her Majesty the Queen.”

Duncan Lewis, Chief Executive of Emmaus Hertfordshire, said, “We are honoured to be chosen to receive this living legacy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, to stand as a growing reminder of her incredible commitment to improving the quality of life in communities like ours through the power of nature. Thank you to the Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire for choosing Emmaus to benefit from this wonderful initiative which recognises the work we do to help our formerly homeless companions to regain their independence.”

A few days later, on 16 November, Emmaus Brighton & Hove planted their tree during a special ceremony at the community’s site in Portslade, on the outskirts of Brighton. The tree was presented by Lord-Lieutenant of East Sussex Andrew Blackman. Also in attendance were Vice Lord-Lieutenant of East Sussex Sara Stonor DL, the High Sherrif of East Sussex Jane King and former Mayor of Brighton & Hove Councillor Alan Robbins.

In a speech given after the ceremony, Mr Blackman said: “Her Majesty’s entire life was of course given to service and again I think that’s so appropriate for this place, because what you do here is serve your neighbours, serve your community, serve your city. Everything about this place fits in with the ethos that Her Majesty The Queen was so much a beacon of. I really can’t think of a better place for one of her trees to be planted.”

Chief Executive of Emmaus Brighton & Hove Karen Chapman said: “We are thrilled to be chosen for this honour. We have worked over the last 25 years to support people who have experienced homelessness, offering them a home, meaningful work experience and support and are so delighted to be recognised in this way. We hope that the tree will stand as a living testament to our work for many, many years to come.”

The trees become part of the living legacy in honour of Her Majesty, joining over a million trees already planted across the UK as part of The Queen’s Green Canopy. These living legacies will honour Her Majesty’s leadership of the nation and benefit future generations.

The Tree of Trees was a spectacular 21-metre sculpture featuring 350 British native trees that stood outside Buckingham Palace as an exciting centrepiece of The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend celebrations in June.

Designed by Thomas Heatherwick, the sculpture reflected the joyful Jubilee tree planting which swept the nation as part of The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC), inspiring over a million trees to be planted during its first season, from October 2021 to March 2022. The 350 trees are set in aluminium pots embossed with Her Majesty’s cypher. The trees and pots are now being gifted to selected community groups and organisations to celebrate their work and inspire the next generation of tree planters across the nation.