Popular television wildlife star Steve Backshall plants an apple tree for Burbage Primary School

Written by Tony Millett on .


Burbage Primary School's Principal Nicola Coupe with Steve Backshall & the treeBurbage Primary School's Principal Nicola Coupe with Steve Backshall & the treeTelevision wildlife presenter Steve Backshall's visit to Burbage Primary School on Tuesday (November 7) caused a huge buzz of excitement.

Steve was there to plant the first tree - an apple tree - in the school's new orchard, which will form part of a memory garden and also attract more wildlife into the school's grounds.

Before the tree-planting he told children and parents: "I grew up in an era before 'the environment' existed.  It does my heart good to see the ethos of this school.  So many problems in the world were caused by my generation - and will be solved by this lot!"

He was delighted to find the school had a 'bug hotel' and said that the first time you hold a slow worm, watch a toad, see a newt or spot a hedgehog - is something you will always remember: "British wildlife is as exciting as wildlife anywhere in the world - it's ours and it's our responsibility to take care of it."


Out of the pot...Out of the pot...  ...and into the ground......and into the ground...  ...it looked as though he was going to do all the filling in......it looked as though he was going to do all the filling in...


...until help arrived...until help arrived

As someone remarked, moving from the school hall to the tree-planting was a bit of a Pied Piper image as the children dashed off to keep up with the very popular Mr Backshall.  

We should have changed our headline to read "Very popular television wildlife star..."  We heard of one small girl - who goes to a different school - burst into tears when told Steve Backshall was visiting Burbage School...glad to say she got to meet him anyway!

During his visit, Steve met the children during their afternoon assembly, telling them about some of his wildlife encounters and adventures.

He was pleased to hear about the work the children are doing in their 'Global Goals' projects. During the course of this year, each class at the school is creating a project related to one of the United Nations' Global Goals to develop knowledge and skills and to help make the world a better place by 2030.

Steve Backshall is well known for his Deadly 60 programme, as well as a whole host of nature and adventure shows, including Big Blue LiveExtreme Mountain Challenge and BBC Alaska Live.

In addition to his TV and adventure pursuits, Steve is the author of thirteen books - including his children's adventure series The Falcon Chronicles.


After the planting Steve proved to expert at selfies...After the planting Steve proved to expert at selfies...  ...lots of them!...lots of them!  And a few old fashioned autographs tooAnd a few old fashioned autographs too
The school's Chair of Governors, Emma Butler, was delighted he could bring his enthusiasm for the wild world to the school: "He was keen to hear about the way we use our wonderful school grounds to attract and provide habitats for wildlife and the children enjoyed telling him about their class projects to help the natural world."

"It was an exciting and informative afternoon in school and the tree-planting was a fitting end to the day. The tree will be joined by other trees over the course of the next few months and will create an orchard and memory garden to be enjoyed by all the children."