London Liveries join to boost pollinators in the City of London

Pollinating London Together (PLT) was launched at Mansion House on Thursday 16 September with the support of the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of the City of London, Environment Minister Rebecca Pow, and Deputy Mayor for Energy and Environment at Greater London Authority, Shirley Rodrigues.

Pollinating London Together is a new pan-livery initiative created to raise awareness of the importance of biodiversity and pollinators in London, and to create change.

L-R: John Burton, PLT Chairman; Lady Mayoress Hilary Russell; Dr Heather Barrett-Mold, PLT Vice Chair; Anthony Bickmore, PLT Board. Photo by Andrew Cleminson

The Rt Honourable Lord Mayor of London, Alderman William Russell, said,

“I am very excited to be supporting Pollinating London Together. It’s a brilliant initiative that brings attention to the importance of increasing green spaces in our great city. This is something that I am very passionate about. I hope that PLT’s work will encourage others to take action.”

PLT is a collaboration of some of the City of London’s Livery Companies, initiated by the Wax Chandlers and Gardeners. PLT’s purpose is to help champion and create green places, starting in the City of London, ensuring better conditions for pollinators to thrive, and allowing workers and visitors to the City to benefit from the tranquillity of those green spaces.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Minister Rebecca Pow recorded a video that was played at the event showing her support for the initiative. She said,

“I am delighted to be here celebrating your Pollinating London Together initiative. It sounds like a really proactive project that can involve so many people.

We’ve set a legally-binding target to halt the decline of species abundance by 2030; that’s a ground breaking commitment.’’

Highlighting the introduction of nature recovery networks and habitat restoration projects, she urged everyone to help our pollinators.

She said,

‘‘We can all make a difference to helping our pollinators and that doesn’t just mean bees. It means a whole range of other insects – moths, butterflies, hoverflies, and all the different bees. Together we need to provide them with food and nectar, that’s where you and I come in, greening up London. There’s a great stat that says on average three gardens together every day could produce one teaspoon of nectar; that’s the food energy that our pollinators require.’’

Minister Pow also encouraged guests to support app-based pollinator monitoring schemes, which help the Government work out what is happening with pollinators and how to help them.

The PLT initiative seeks to educate and inform with Citizen Science and with other projects that demonstrate to children and adults alike of the importance of pollinators to everyone and their crucial role in the food supply, the health of our environment and maintaining biodiversity.

Shirley Rodrigues, Deputy Mayor for Energy and Environment, highlighted how activities to protect pollinators play a positive role in enhancing London’s green spaces for human benefit too. She said,

“Protecting, restoring and increasing London’s natural green spaces is at the heart of the Mayor’s plans for a green recovery, creating a healthier, more resilient city where everyone has access to a green space and wildlife can thrive. This includes continuing to work to fulfil his ambitious manifesto pledge that no Londoner should be more than 10 minutes away from a green space. In the lead up to COP26 and COP15 which focuses on the ecological emergency, it’s great to see action being taken to improve the city for pollinators, enabling more Londoners to experience wildlife.”

Professor Alistair Griffiths (RHS) commented,

“Pollinating London Together is a great opportunity to bring the people of London together on this important ecological initiative. Human health and well-being are intrinsically linked to the work of pollinators like bees but so many of them are in decline. Raising awareness of this issue and taking steps to improve conditions for pollinators, while creating beautiful green spaces, is an extremely worthwhile cause.”

For further information, contact Beci Ryan (Pollinating London Together project coordinator) – 07976104408

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