YOUNGSTERS have been planting trees to mark the Queen’s lifetime of service to the Commonwealth.

Kevan Jones, MP for North Durham, joined children as part of the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, a network of forest conservation initiatives.

The trees, two silver birch, two rowan, and a hazel, were planted at Hilda Park playing field, near Chester-le-Street, by Mr Jones, Durham County Councillor Tracie Smith and children from Selby Cottage Child Care Centre.

Mr Jones said: “This is an excellent project to develop forests in Commonwealth countries across the globe.

“It was a great pleasure to join the local children who will grow up alongside the trees, and who already share a passion for nature.”

The trees were donated The Woodland Trust, Sainsbury’s and ITV.

In April, a landmark documentary, The Queen’s Green Planet, followed the monarch exploring her deeply held commitment to the Commonwealth and her little-known love of trees.

County Councillor Tracie Smith said: “I was delighted to assist with planting the trees and am sure that they will be appreciated by the local community.”