PREPARATIONS for the festive season are well underway ... and so are plans to dispose of your used Christmas trees for charity afterwards.

For a busy week, starting on Saturday January 12, an army of volunteers will drive around the borough picking up people's used Christmas trees (real not artificial) from outside their houses in aid of Wirral Hospice St John's.

For a pre-booked donation of £5 for a small, £7 for a medium and £10 for a large tree, people leave their pine tree in an accessible spot outside their homes and, within the week, their tree magically disappears.

Large vans, many of which have been lent to the hospice for the week, typically manned by three people, are sent all around Wirral.

One person will drive while the other two passengers take it in turns to pick up a tree from each address and load it into the back of the van.

Every Wirral postcode area is eligible and people can book from now, up until Wednesday January 9, to secure the easy collection of their festive fir tree.

Once the van is full it is driven to various pre-arranged temporary drop sites around Wirral to offload, for various forms of chipping and recycling, and then it's back on the road heading out for the next load.

Fuel and food is provided for everyone who volunteers their time and / or the use of their van(s).

Elaine Connell, Wirral Hospice St John's fundraising co-ordinator, says: "Every year our wonderful Wirral community supports us by making a kind donation to have their real, pine, Christmas trees collected.

"For our army of volunteers, it's a lot of fun and a great way to work off the Christmas pudding.

"We're extremely grateful to everyone who supports Wirral Hospice St John's at this time of year through their donations, by giving up their valuable time to help with the collections and, of course, for the use of their vans."

For volunteer / van, details contact Elaine Connell at

To register your tree for collection call 343-0778 or go online to