The Wigan-based online business, whose showpieces have appeared on Christmas TV specials such as comedy Gavin and Stacey, was chosen by the City of London this year to grace a space beside St Paul’s Cathedral. “Covid has made delivering direct even more popular and demand was the earliest it has ever been, orders started in July,” said CTW owner Stephen Evans.
The pandemic has also influenced this year’s new trends for smaller trees and for families to buy more than one.
“With many people working from home they are focussing more on decorations, but have less space and don’t want falling leaves,” adds David Sumner, CTW’s online sales director.
Estimates vary, but when compared to a natural tree responsibly disposed of, customers concerned to lower their carbon footprint need to use their synthetic trees for at least a decade. CTW’s ones come with a 10 year warranty.
Sustainability drove the City of London’s decision to replace the natural tree it has habitually chosen with one it can use annually.
CTW designs in the UK and manufactures in the Far East using plastic materials with some of the trees’ steel structures fabricated in Wigan.
Its partnership with the Borneo Nature Foundation, a not-for-profit conservation organisation working to protect the island’s incredible rainforest, biodiversity and wildlife, has helped plant 17,000 seedlings and pledges a ‘tree for every order’.
“The Borneo Nature Foundation was a natural choice when searching for a charity partner,” says Evans. “Climate change is the most important issue globally in this day and age, and with our background in traditional horticulture, we have a real affinity with what the charity are working to achieve. We particularly like the way BNF encourages local communities in Borneo to grow the trees from seed collected in the rainforest”.
“As well as the financial pledge we’re pleased to commit, we’ll be working closely with the BNF to assist with the reforestation process where we can, helping to upscale the process and make the largest impact possible.”
Susan M. Cheyne, Borneo Nature Foundation co-director, added: “In just four short decades, Borneo has lost over 50 percent of its tropical rainforest coverage, due to industrial scale deforestation, illegal logging and wildfires caused by man-made interference. This is coupled with the devastating effects on the local wildlife, with animals at danger from both poachers and losing their natural habitat – the area we are supporting is home to 10 percent of the world’s wild orangutans.
“This pledge is one of the most significant we’ve received to date. We’re grateful to the Christmas Tree World team for their support and we’re looking forward to working together to further protect the biodiversity of Borneo.”
Today’s artificial Christmas trees look more natural than ever, but it’s the recycled and recyclable equivalent foliage CTW is now searching for. “Inventors, materials scientists, there is an opportunity, please call,” says Sumner.