IT'S already been a challenging summer for the country’s trees.

We’ve had temperatures as high as 40 degrees in England causing wildfires in the forest and many young trees in our towns and cities left to die of thirst, baking in the sun because under-resourced local authorities have made no plans to water them.

Amidst the panic over the recent heat, I’ve seen only a few voices pointing out the vital role trees play in cooling our urban environments down, ensuring that as the climate changes, our population centres remain comfortable. However, this all requires intelligent planning, planting and – most crucially – care.

The role of arborists in our towns and cities is becoming ever more important. As we head towards an early autumn, it’s worth grasping every opportunity – whether at the 55th National Amenity Conference, ARB Show at the APF or elsewhere – to make that point loud and clear.