Vegan supper raises £1,200 for reforestation charity

Simon West from The Word Forest Organisation (left) presents a tree planting certificate to Robin Collyns of The Pilot Boat following their successful vegan fundraising supper

LYME Regis pub and restaurant the Pilot Boat recently hosted a delicious three-course vegan supper to raise funds for local environmental charity, The Word Forest Organisation.

Led by manager Robin Collyns and vegan chef John Long, staff at the Pilot Boat served 65 guests.

Mr Collyns said: “The Word Forest are doing great work to keep climate chaos in check. All coastal communities are at risk of damage from sea rise.

“We’re hopeful our fundraiser will help to plant at least 240 trees.”

The event went beyond all expectations and boosted by the Pilot Boat’s generous raffle prize of a two-course dinner for four with drinks, raising a total of £1,202.

This has enabled 480 new saplings to be planted in Kenya and bought construction materials to build their next school.

Chairman of trustees at The Word Forest Organisation, Simon West, commented: “We’re incredibly grateful to Robin, John and everyone who worked so hard to make the event successful and memorable.

“Planting trees in the tropics is a vital component to mitigating climate chaos. The 480 Pilot Boat trees will not only draw down and lock in around 120 tonnes of CO2 and other pollutants in a handful of years, but the commodities from them will also help reduce poverty and hunger: a mango tree, for example, at five years old will be around 12 feet tall and produce 100 pieces of fruit.”

John thoroughly enjoyed creating the menu. It included fish-free cakes and tempura sea veg with tartar sauce, followed by a vegan mess with burnt orange meringue, cream, fruit and a few little extras. Everyone agreed the food was jam-packed with flavour and imagination.

The Word Forest Organisation’s CEO Tracey West commented: “The tree planting communities we’re working with will undoubtedly be planting lots of fruit and nut trees, but also other drought resistant indigenous ones too.

“Desertification is swiftly creeping in. Many of the dusty roads that cut through rural East Kenya, used to be lined with palms and are now lined with cactus. We’re doing all we can to build more resilience against the extreme weather challenges our tree planting friends are going to be faced with.”

The Lyme Regis-based Word Forest Organisation will continue to focus their attention on planting in the tropics, but over the last month, they’ve also launched their local ‘Tree-Mend-Us Project’.

Horticultural trustee Phil Gamble explained: “We recognise the urgent need to create habitats so biodiversity can flourish in the UK, too. We recently distributed almost 1,000 saplings to Lyme Regis and three neighbouring eco-groups.

“Thanks to the mayor Brian Larcombe, Lyme Regis Town Council took 200 of them and their green-fingered landscaping team planted them in Langmoor Gardens, by Lepers Well at the Lynch, near the football club, Colway Lane and in other locations.”

For more details about future events and forthcoming community activities, visit

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