Lord Sugar’s a sweetie after all! Apprentice host becomes third donor to give £100,000 for Mail’s school orchards
He is known as one of Britain’s toughest businessmen – telling young entrepreneurs ‘You’re fired’ when they fail to make the grade.
But now Lord Sugar has revealed a sweeter side to his nature by making a donation of £100,000 to the Daily Mail’s Be A Tree Angel campaign to create a greener Britain.
The campaign, organised with the Tree Council, encourages members of the public to plant trees or donate money to plant them around the UK – particularly in urban areas where they are needed most.
Lord Sugar, pictured with his wife Ann, has pledged £100,000 towards the orchards project which is being organised by the Tree Council. Lord Sugar said his motivation is to inspire children to appreciate nature and to fight climate change
Lord Sugar, who this week completed his 15th series of The Apprentice on BBC1, has now become the third donor in a week to pledge £100,000 towards the orchards project
In one branch of our campaign, businesses have been asked to help fund planting orchards in schools. Lord Sugar, who this week completed his 15th series of The Apprentice on BBC1, has now become the third donor in a week to pledge £100,000 towards the orchards project.
He said his motivation is to inspire children to appreciate nature and to fight climate change.
He was joined by supermarket Sainsbury’s which has pledged a further £25,000 to fund orchards for schools.
The donations have come after this newspaper has given away thousands of holly, birch, oak, willow and spruce trees, while pledges and donations from the public will fund the planting of more than 35,000 trees.
In the past three days alone the campaign has raised more than £300,000 from businesses. On Tuesday Richard Caring, chairman of Caprice Holdings, which owns the Ivy restaurant chain, donated £100,000 to the campaign. On Wednesday, a British businessman who wished to remain anonymous donated £100,000. And now Lord Sugar has become our third major sponsor.
The campaign, organised with the Tree Council, encourages members of the public to plant trees or donate money to plant them around the UK – particularly in urban areas where they are needed most
But even more money has come in. Lloyds Banking Group and Dobbies Garden Centres have also made generous donations to the campaign, which has been backed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson and celebrities including Joanna Lumley, Ben Fogle, Jilly Cooper and Clive Anderson.
Organisations such as the RSPB, National Trust and Woodland Trust also support the campaign.
Lord Sugar’s funding, along with that of other generous businessmen and companies, means the campaign can pay for more than 3,000 orchards at 3,000 schools – three times the original target.
Writing about his donation, Lord Sugar said: ‘Over the last year or so I’ve become increasingly aware of how climate change is affecting our planet.’
He said he hopes to inspire a new generation to appreciate trees because it ‘really is miraculous to learn how trees absorb carbon dioxide, one of the main greenhouse gases, and emit oxygen into our atmosphere’.
Environment Secretary Theresa Villiers, pictured outside 10 Downing Street earlier this week praised the Daily Mail’s tree planting campaign
He also jokingly took a dig at an old sparring partner, writing: ‘The only other recommendation I can make is that we cut down on the hot air emanating from Piers Morgan’s mouth.’ Sara Lom, chief executive of the Tree Council, said: ‘It’s fantastic to have Alan Sugar’s generous support for the Daily Mail’s Tree Angel campaign.
‘Lord Sugar’s amazing £100,000 donation, and the £25,000 from Sainsbury’s, will help create a further 1,250 orchards and fruiting hedgerows through this campaign.
‘If we are to secure a healthy, tree-filled future we all have to play our part, and the support of business will be essential.’ Backing the campaign last night, Environment Secretary Theresa Villiers said: ‘It is fantastic to see that the campaign has enlisted the backing of so many organisations and individuals; gathering momentum for thousands more trees to be planted.’
She added: ‘Our manifesto sets out the most ambitious environmental programme that any British Government has ever been elected on, and tree planting across the UK is a vital part of this.
‘The Government has planted over 22million trees since 2010, and we have committed to go further, increasing planting rates in this Parliament, and growing woodland cover across the country. We must plant more now to help reach net zero emissions by 2050.’
LORD SUGAR: I hope I can inspire green apprentices
One thing all the experts are agreed upon is that planting more trees is the way forward. And that struck a personal chord with me
Over the last year or so I’ve become increasingly aware of how climate change is affecting our planet.
There have been many initiatives bandied around as to how to slow down or avert this crisis, such as shops charging 10p for carrier bags, suggesting we eat less red meat, and so on.
However, one thing all the experts are agreed upon is that planting more trees is the way forward. And that struck a personal chord with me.
As a young kid, at school in Hackney, I was always fascinated by the science of plants, and watching how they grew.
It really is miraculous to learn how trees absorb carbon dioxide, one of the main greenhouse gases, and emit oxygen into our atmosphere.
Plus, trees are home to thousands of species of insects as well as birds. Not to mention how beautiful they look in full bloom. It’s even more important for the young students of today to be inspired by the role trees play in our environment, and to observe how each and every one of them can make a difference by helping to plant the trees of the future.
They are the apprentices who will help make the world a greener, better place.
To this end, I’ve decided to donate £100,000 to the Daily Mail’s campaign to provide another 1,000 orchards for 1,000 schools.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has pledged that Britain will become carbon-neutral by 2050. This campaign is a positive step in that direction.
The only other recommendation I can make is that we cut down on the hot air emanating from Piers Morgan’s mouth.
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