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Kick starting the Capsule Forest by planting 500 trees in a day!

Wow! 500 trees planted in a single day. (Ok so, they were not very big trees – but hopefully on their way to being so).

Capsule has always been rooted (no pun intended) in sustainability and ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance), so it was blooming amazing to be able to start our own forest.

As a business we already reduce our carbon footprint as fully as we can and are climate positive with our wonderful friends Ecologi for those bits we simply cannot reduce yet. So you can imagine our excitement when it was first mooted about going that little bit further and giving 500 little friends a chance to do their stuff. Clearly, it is helpful when you know someone that you can ‘borrow’ a little bit of land from (cheers Steve and Janet). But even in our part of the country, not everywhere can be given over to polo and clay pigeon shooting. Nice to mix it up a bit and get some much-needed trees in.

New roots

So, the day finally came (on a slightly damp morning). The whole Capsule team was there - coming on bicycles, foot, horse and other forms of eco-friendly transport (well at least for the last 100 metres). It was great to be doing something not too far from the office.

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A big shout to Phil Sturgeon from ProtectEarth for organising everything and to Lewis Grant from Ecologi who – although arriving most inappropriately attired - put a simply amazing shift in. Chapeau! We would also like to thank all the other volunteers who helped in this mammoth task. All elements of gratitude shown to those who took part were well below the limit in the Gifts, Inducements and Hospitality Policy. The lunchtime baps were a delight to behold and refortified everyone for the afternoon shift. Everyone remained incredibly focused and courteous even when scrabbling for the limited number of mallets – plus the battle against the Cotswold stone which seemed to be unrelenting.

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“I’ve only been with Capsule for just over a week and joined because I have a strong passion about the role of business in sustainability and social responsibility – and love Capsule’s aim. I can't believe that eight days in, I’m already off out planting trees. It's great! What’s next? ”

Alice Garnier – Growth Manager, Capsule

However, this was not just a random planting of 500 trees. An extensive evaluation took place of the proposed area – including avoiding medieval ground works. The area planted is unused scrubland and bordering onto some existing trees. Equally, carbon absorption is not just about the trees themselves – it is the earth they go in, the environment around and whether it is displacing anything that was already absorbing carbon. Alas our local soil is not brilliant, but our great selection of trees will produce long-lasting growth that will suck up tonnes of the naughty stuff over time.

We planted small-leaved lime (grows well in the area, loved by invertebrates in spring and quite climate-change resilient), Hornbeam, Rowan (good for the windy area and berries for a number of bird species), Wild Service Tree, Sweet Chestnut and, of course, a few Oak (but a bit more protected as they need time – a lot of it). To be clear, we’re not doing anything like counting the carbon value from these trees – they’re at least a good decade off doing anything noticeable on that front. But it’s a start – and we feel good about it. Really good about it.

Capsule strongly supports the volunteering efforts of its team and this was a great example of how much wellbeing can be derived from ‘giving’ and doing something a little different.

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“I mean I love tree planting – but I love volunteering even more. People fail to appreciate just how important it is to interact and to ‘give’. Equally so important for mental wellbeing. Possibly the first post-covid occasion all the ‘Capsulites’ have been together plus meeting up with friends unseen for too long. Again, this has been a brilliant day and dead chuffed to be involved but if could say one thing it is to tell businesses to embrace volunteering for their team. They will see the rewards and it feels good.’

Dorian Zanker – Chief Sustainability Officer, Capsule

Whilst all the trees were protected and mulched, we will be checking them throughout the year and, inevitably, not all of them will survive – but fingers crossed – and we are already champing at the bit to get the next 500 in next winter.

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“I could never have imagined that in less than one year of trading we would have made so much progress in the business – have so many clients that we are supporting and even be planting our own forest. It’s complete madness. ESG is at the heart of our business and how we help present businesses to insurers. We are a purpose-led business and use our ESG Index to assist in the story. I would like to thank everyone who has come out today. Seriously, I am overwhelmed.”

Tom Wynne – CEO, Capsule

Capsule Insurance Services provides insurance assistance for scale-up and growing businesses looking for appropriate and reasonably priced insurance cover to help power them forward and ensure they are not constrained. Too often we find a business’ insurance cover has not kept in pace with their growing needs. Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) sits at the heart of our business and, we hope, is important to our clients. Capsule uses its unique ESG Index to help present a fuller view of clients to ensure improved insurance terms.

Full team (start)

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