Welbeck Children’s has announced a new partnership with environment charity and non-profit organisation the National Forest, as it prepares to publish non-fiction picture book What Did the Tree See? by Charlotte Guillain, illustrated by Sam Usher, in the new year.
The partnership will see a percentage of the book's sales go to the National Forest, to support its woodland creation and management programmes. The National Forest is growing trees across 200 square miles of the Midlands. It is the first forest to be created at scale in England for over 1,000 years.
Told in rhyming verse, What Did the Tree See? follows the story of an oak tree on a hilltop as it witnesses life changing around it over the course of hundreds of years, from the time when hunters chased deer through the woodland, to when trees were cleared for farmland, to the smog and factories emerging during the Industrial Revolution. Accompanying pages at the end of the book include a timeline of events in world history across the periods featured in the poem, the lifecycle of an oak tree, and prompts to help parents and children explore their own local history.
Partnership activities will include schools engagement and promotion of experiences that encourage families and schools to visit the forest, or explore their local woodlands while sharing the book’s messages, such as finding out if there is a project to plant more trees where they live or watching trees grow through the changing seasons.
Welbeck Children’s will be providing the National Forest with supporting resources, including activity packs and a digital poster.
David Bourque, director of development at the National Forest, said: "We are delighted to be partnering with Welbeck Children’s and its beautiful new title What Did the Tree See?. The book highlights the longevity and power of some of our most special trees and how fragile the balance is between the environment and human development. We need to make sure we get that balance right for the next generation. In terms of publishing, Welbeck Children’s use of FSC paper and soy inks reflect how their industry is innovating in response to climate change – something we want to see more of at the National Forest."
Jane Harris, children’s group publisher, said: "Our partnership with the National Forest is part of a broader commitment to sustainability for Welbeck Publishing. It is exciting to be able to support such a great cause with this beautiful new book for children."
What Did the Tree See? will be published on 18th February 2021.
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