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Ancient Tree Forum Newsletter - November 2016
Veteran trees at historic sites 

Historic England, the public body that looks after England's historic environment, is probably best known for its work with historic buildings and monuments, but it has now made a firm commitment to protecting ancient and other veteran trees like those at Snodhill Castle in Herefordshire (pictured).

By signing the Ancient Tree Forum's Concordat this autumn, Historic England agrees to support the Ancient Tree Forum with a range of actions such as ensuring that issues related to ancient or heritage tree conservation and protection are included in relevant policies and legislation.Other signatories include the National Trust and the Arboricultural Association. 

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Employing a contractor for veteran tree work
The ATF has recently put together some guidance on selecting a suitable contractor to carry out work on ancient and other veteran trees. 

Guidance is available both for those with very limited experience of veteran trees, and for those who have some arboricultural knowledge. In both cases it includes some example questions that can be used to help gauge a contractors experience in managing veteran trees.
 
read more 
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The Queen and the Bronze Oak Tree Project
A bronze sculpture of a 900 year old oak tree from Windsor Great Park was recently presented to the Queen.

The sculpture was given to commemorate the Queen's contribution to the arts, at a ceremony held at the Royal Academy attended by ATF Founder President,Ted Green. Ted's idea is that in time a full-size replica of a Windsor tree will be created and displayed in central London, to raise awareness of the value of ancient trees.
 
read more
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Conservation grazing and wood pasture restoration 
Tim Hill, ATF trustee and forestry adviser who manages 800 hectares of ancient woodland in the Sherwood Forest, continues his blog from the Thoresby Estate, with a look at the challenges of reintroducing wood pasture in an area of conservation grazing.

'These are pretty substantial and expensive shelters but absolutely necessary to protect saplings against browsing and trampling by the Longhorns. We shall be installing over 100 shelters...and relocating oak seedlings from beneath the shade of their ancient parent into open space.
read more 
ATF autumn visit to the Wimpole estate
The Ancient Tree Forum held its October field meeting at the Wimpole estate in Cambridgeshire, now owned by the National Trust. Originally a small deer park surrounded by open fields, the Wimpole parkland has changed many times throughout its history.

Different owners employed different landscape designers and gardeners, who each left their mark on the landscape. One of the most influential was Capability Brown. Our visit focussed on the sites many ancient and other veteran trees.
read more
ATF national events and training
 
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Thursday 9 March 2017
ATF field trip to Dallington
A limited number of places are available for our Spring field visit to this remote East Sussex forest.
 
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Thursday 13 and Friday 14 July 2017
Summer conference in Epping
Our annual summer forum for 2017 will be held in Epping Forest. Speakers for the morning sessions have yet to be confirmed, and the ATF would be very interested to receive proposals for topics.
 
Local ATF group news and events
 
 
Saturday 10 December
ATF East Anglia field visit to Melford Hall
The last ATF East Anglia field event of 2016 will be held in the extensive grounds of Melford Hall, which date back over a thousand years. The walk will be led by a National Trust volunteer.
 
find out more
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ATF Cumbria's September visit to Lowther
Charles Bennet of the ATF Cumbria group, writes about the group’s second field trip, which was led by Ian Jack, Head Forester at the Lowther Estate. Discussions focused on how the park has evolved, the future of the deer park as a wood pasture, the need to protect the most important trees from the sheep, and how to improve the site's biodiversity. 
 
Read more and see a video about the event
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Can you help ATF Wales plan events for 2017?
This important regional ATF group now needs committed volunteers to help plan and organise field meetings and other activities. As group lead, Tracey Lovering organised three successful field meetings in north, south and mid Wales, but she has now had to step down from the role. With plenty of people keen to attend ATF Wales events, we don’t want to lose the momentum. 
 
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Other events and news
 
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Saturday 11 March 2017
Field day for arborists at Knepp, Sussex
The Knepp Estate has become internationally renowned for its wildlife and biodiversity and for its visionary approach to conservation and rewilding. Ted Green, the ATF's founder president, is running this field day, which includes practical demonstrations, for ‘thinking arborists’.
 
find out more
 
Book review: Ancient Trees of the National Trust by Brian Muelaner and Edward Parker
The National Trust is Europe’s largest private custodian of ancient trees. This book features descriptions and photographs of iconic trees in the trust's care, like the Ankerwycke Yew, and the Tolpuddle Martyrs’ tree, and of properties across England, Wales and Northern Ireland which are rich in ancient and other veteran trees. 
 
Read Ted Green's review
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Book review: The Long, Long Life of Trees by Fiona Stafford
Fiona Stafford is professor of English at the University of Oxford, and her book is described by the publishers as ‘a lyrical tribute to the diversity of trees, their physical beauty, their special characteristics and uses, and their ever-evolving meanings.’
 
Read Keith Alexander's review
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New website for the National Tree Safety Group
The National Tree Safety Group has launched a new website to promote its important work on tree risk management. Publications can be downloaded from the site including Common Sense Risk Management of Trees, which sets out guidance about management that is proportionate to the risk posed by trees.
 
See the website
Find an ancient tree or treescape to visit
Esmee Fairbairn Foundation
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