Cllr Colin Lay went to investigate and realised urgent action was needed for the tree to be saved. Fellow councillor John Matthissen and Mid Suffolk District Council’s Public Realm team quickly answered the call for help.

The tree was so heavy it took four people to lift it into a trailer before the public realm team transported it to Red Gables, a wellbeing hub in Ipswich Road, Stowmarket.

The tree was then planted on Friday, 25 August 2023 in the grounds of Red Gables by the councillors and members of the Volunteers of Stowmarket group.

Cllr Lay and Manager of Red Gables, who is also a Stowmarket Tree Warden, said: “This was an unusual discovery and it was clear we needed to take urgent action. We are not sure where the tree was from, but are pleased we have been able to plant it at Red Gables so it can grow and thrive. I’d like to thank everyone who helped.”


Cllr Colin Lay (Left) with Elle Stenning Miller (Right). Silver birch and root ball pictured prior to replanting (Far right).

Left to right: Councillors John Matthissen and Colin Lay, worked together with Volunteers of Stowmarket members, Craig and Mark.