Up to 40 new jobs created
An arboretum, lake, visitor centre, restaurant and shopping area have been given the go-ahead at Barcham Trees’ Cambridgeshire nursery, creating up to 40 new jobs.
The 17-acre development’s highlight will be a 12-acre arboretum, fitting as Barcham’s is the largest container tree nursery in Europe.
The company was supported by East Cambridgeshire’s tourism office and Soham Town Council – East Cambridgeshire District Council planning officers said it would be a boost to the local and tourist economy.
‘Educational and practical’
Managing director Mike Glover said of the arboretum: “It will be aesthetically pleasing, educational, practical and a showcase for both our trade and private customers.
“We are the first major tree nursery to see such a facility as part of its remit, and our knowledgeable staff will be on hand to share their expertise with visitors.
“We see this as a natural extension of what the nursery does, which already includes the education of tree-care professionals and involvement with setting arboricultural industry standards.”
Barcham’s 300-acre site
Barcham Trees has provided more than a million instant-impact trees for the urban environment in Britain, from its 300-acre site next to the A142 between Ely and Soham.
The site will also include a conference centre, plant centre, and 150 car parking spaces, plus overflow parking.
The nursery’s arboricultural director and chairman of the Arboricultural Association Keith Sacre said: “More people than ever now appreciate the huge benefits trees provide for human health and the environment in general, and we are determined the arboretum will be a beacon of sustainability.”