Public urged to vote for their tree of the year before polls close

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People are being asked to cast their votes in the last few days of a poll to find the UK’s best trees.

Hundreds of nominations have been whittled down to 10 trees in England and six each in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the Woodland Trust said.

Shortlisted trees include an unusual-shaped beech created more than a century ago to woo a lover, an ancient oak from which rebels were hanged and a horse chestnut grown from a conker taken from the last tree standing at Verdun.

Ancient oaks and yews, trees which have overlooked poets or been planted to mark historical events, those with connections to legends or famous figures or standing at the heart of their communities are all in the poll.

Winners for each nation will be declared before a single tree is taken forward to represent the UK in the European Tree Of The Year.

The UK’s annual competition run by the Woodland Trust aims to highlight the best trees to help drive up interest in their value and protection.

The awards, supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, also offer a £1,000 tree care award for each winning tree.

Kaye Brennan, lead campaigner at the Woodland Trust said: “Easily overlooked and routinely undervalued, trees like these need their moment in the sun.

“One tree in the shortlist is a great case in point: over 800-years-old, it would have been felled without persistent efforts of a stubborn landowner who had the will to keep it safe.

“But only one can take the crown! Voting closes soon – and the tree with the most votes will win it.”

ITV gardener David Domoney, said: “The Woodland Trust’s Tree Of The Year contest is a fantastic way to get us all talking about trees and what they do for us.

“I’m a gardener so naturally I’m a fan, but of course we are all dependent on trees which still so often have to make way for us. So let’s celebrate the best.”

People can vote for their favourite tree at Voting ends at 9am on Monday October 7.

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