One of the finest yew trees in Chichester is fighting to be named the Woodland Trust’s Tree of the Year.
The Kingley Vale Great Yew can be found in one of Europe’s few remaining yew forests near Chichester and is one of ten shortlisted by the charity for its annual competition celebrating the nation’s special trees.
The yews of Kingley Vale have graced the South Downs for thousands of years and are some of the oldest living things in the UK. Local folklore has it that the Druids worshipped there before the Romans came and that the archers of Agincourt used the supple wood to make their bows.
Over the centuries, most of Europe’s yew forests have been felled, with Kingley Vale being one of the finest remaining examples. And within one of the finest yew forests is one of the finet yews – the Kingley Vale Great Yew.
Horticulturist and TV personality David Domoney, who is supporting the competition, said: “The Woodland Trust’s Tree of the Year celebrates the marvel and beauty of trees in our country. They are such an important part of our cities and countryside, not only for their beauty, but also for the health benefits they offer to all living creatures.”
As well as putting the nation’s best trees on the map, the awards – supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery – offer a £1,000 tree care award for each winning tree. This might be spent on works to benefit the tree’s health, signage, or a community celebration.
To vote, visit: woodlandtrust.org.uk/treeoftheyear
Voting closes at noon on September 27.