If we are to hit the government’s tree planting targets (Tory tree planting effort leaves a lot to be desired, 12 June) it is essential to acknowledge the efforts of conservationists working on private land. In just three years, estate manager Roy Burrows has transformed his corner of the Yorkshire Dales into a haven for wildlife, largely by planting 65,000 trees to create corridors for local nature. Last year, Neville Gill planted 2,000 trees in Northumberland by hand, motivated by conserving the local population of black grouse. A year into his funding agreement, he still hadn’t received a penny for that work. To hit its targets, government must reward those putting in the hard work.