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Major Oak top of the trees

Posted onPosted on 17th Nov
Major Oak top of the trees

The Major Oak in Sherwood Forest has been crowned England’s Tree of the Year in a public vote run by the Woodland Trust. The tree, made famous by Robin Hood, beat off fierce competition from Old Knobbley in Essex and the Ickwell Oak in Bedfordshire to poll 18% of almost 13,000 votes cast in just eight days earlier this month.

The tree will now represent England alongside the winning entries from Scotland (Lady’s Tree) and Wales (The Lonely Tree) in the European Tree of the Year contest, run by the Environmental Partnership Association, which takes place in February 2015.

The Major Oak is situated within Sherwood Forest Country Park, which is managed by Nottinghamshire County Council, and forms part of the wider Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve.

The Woodland Trust in partnership with Country Living is asking the public to support its call for a national register to classify, celebrate and protect the UK’s most important and best-loved trees. The majority of Northern Europe’s special trees are found in the UK and the charity believes these living monuments need to be officially recognised and protected, just like our best historic buildings.

Woodland Trust Chief Executive Beccy Speight said: “The number of votes and amount of interest this contest has generated really demonstrate how much people love their trees and I can’t think of a better representative for England than the Major Oak. We need to translate this passion into action, to ensure all our venerable old trees have the best possible support and protection to prolong their existence in the face of any threats faced – and that’s exactly what our call for a national register of trees of special interest aims to do.”

Councillor John Knight, committee chairman for Culture at Nottinghamshire County Council said: “We are delighted that the Major Oak has been named as the Woodland Trust’s Tree of the Year in England and wish to thank everyone who has taken time to vote. It is one of the most iconic trees worldwide.

“We are rightly proud of our famous tree. Legend has it that it was the hideout for Robin Hood and his Merry Men, and the Major Oak is a fascinating natural habitat. This award is more fantastic recognition for Sherwood Forest. It is also significant news as we are enjoying a real year of celebration in 2014 with Sherwood Forest celebrating its 60th anniversary as a Site of Special Scientific Interest.”

Find out more about the contest and the Woodland Trust’s campaign at