Featuring a unique conversation between The Queen and Sir David Attenborough as they walked in the garden at Buckingham Palace last summer, ITV aired a hugely successful landmark documentary on 16th April. Watched by over five million viewers on the night, it told the ambition of a remarkable new initiative – a vast network of native forests across Britain and the Commonwealth, protected forever in The Queen’s name; The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy.
The documentary follows the progress of The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, the conservation project that aims to raise awareness of how valuable indigenous forests are to us today and to future generations.
Each Commonwealth country has committed to protect in perpetuity hectares of existing forest or plant new forest. Together, this vast canopy of millions of trees across the Commonwealth is the first step in building unilateral engagement on forest conservation. Only through a collaborative approach across countries will we make a real difference to our planet today and into the future.
ITV’s Controller of Factual Jo Clinton Davis said,
Our film, The Queen’s Green Planet, shows not only the Queen’s interest in trees, but also how an ambitious global project has spread across the Commonwealth, with countries all around the world dedicating forests and tree planting initiatives in her name. Rare is the project that starts as a finite one hour documentary and ends up generating the momentum for a timeless campaigning event. We are thrilled that The Woodland Trust and Sainsbury’s have come together to give our viewers the opportunity to be part of this, The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy.
ITV invited viewers to take part in creating the Commonwealth Canopy too. In the run up to the documentary, we partnered with The Woodland Trust, the UK’s largest conservation charity, on a new tree planting campaign, funded by Sainsbury’s supermarket chain, that featured on-screen on Good Morning Britain and This Morning. 10,000 packs of five trees were available to the public, and were snapped up within 20 minutes of each campaign going live! Each pack contains five native UK broadleaf trees – two silver birch, two rowan, and a hazel.
Successful winners received a special hardback commemorative booklet in spring to coincide with the documentary with information on the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy project and the impact trees have on our planet. The tree packs will then be sent out in autumn 2018, the best season to plant young trees, with guidance on how to plant and care of them.
We recognise the role we play as a broadcaster to promote positive change to our viewers through our programmes and content. It is something we are increasingly focusing on for the greater good of our society and planet.