William Matthews, OBE passes away
The Tree Council is saddened to report the death of William (Bill) Matthews, who passed away on 14 July 2018. Bill was one of the Founders and a former Chairman of The Tree Council and was much admired for his company, Southern Tree Surgeons. His expertise, knowledge and achievements in arboriculture led to his Royal Warrant of Appointment by HM The Queen, which earnt him the nick name ‘The Queen’s Tree Surgeon’.
A founding member of the European Arboriculture Council, Bill influenced the arboricultural industry across Europe, and was instrumental in starting the European Tree Worker and European Tree Technician certification scheme.
As Tree Council Chairman, Bill was a great advocate for connecting people with each other and with trees and once said “I’ve always believed that the Tree Warden Scheme is one of the best things we ever did. It works because it’s so specific: it goes right to the heart of every neighbourhood.” Bill brought people together – farmers, conservationists, foresters, local communities – and inspired everyone to treat trees with respect, as living, sensitive things. He will be deeply missed, and our thoughts are with his family and friends. His funeral was in August and a memorial tree will be planted in Kew Gardens this autumn to celebrate his life and achievements.