St Giles Hospice is celebrating the success of this year’s TreeCycle campaign after it collected more trees and raised more funds than ever before.

The environmentally-friendly recycling collection picked up 4,428 Christmas trees this month (January) in return for a small donation to St Giles, raising over £65,000 for the hospice.

Last year’s collection picked up 3,430 trees, raising £35,000. All funds raised by TreeCycle help to ensure that St Giles Hospice can continue to be there for local people and their families living with a terminal illness.

Socially-distanced TreeCycle volunteers get ready to hit the road in January 2021.

Despite the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and the challenges raised by the new lockdown, St Giles was able to run the popular annual fundraiser for the sixth year running thanks to collection teams who followed the latest Government guidelines as they hit the streets.

Working in same-household bubbles, 76 volunteers took part in a socially-distanced operation which covered 3,176 miles between Wednesday 6th and Wednesday 13th January (2021). They collected trees from Lichfield, Walsall, Sutton Coldfield, Tamworth, Burton, Rugeley, Burntwood, Uttoxeter, Swadlincote, Stafford and surrounding areas.

Chloe Herbert, Head of Fundraising at St Giles Hospice, said: “We are absolutely delighted by the success of this year’s TreeCycle campaign and we would like to say a huge thank you to all of our volunteers and supporters for their support.

“Our income was badly hit in 2020 and continues to be so because we were forced to close our shops and cancel many of our events, and as a result of the latest lockdown our shops have had to close once more. This means that TreeCycle is more important to us than ever as we need to raise £850,000 every month just to keep our services going.

“We were bowled over by the commitment and enthusiasm of everyone who took part this year and the money raised will make a massive difference to local people at a time when they need us the most.”

DHL provided St Giles with vital logistics support during the collections, and the trees will be recycled for agricultural uses at Greener Composting in Wall, Lichfield.

“We’d also like to thank Lichfield Tree Works, Darwin Electricals and HiB for supporting TreeCycle this year,” added Chloe. “Our TreeCycle volunteers and corporate sponsors have been amazing.

“Everyone enjoyed taking part and we hope they will spread the word about TreeCycle so that next year we will have more volunteers coming along to help us collect even more trees.”