The Major Oak may be the jewel in Britain’s crown when it comes to trees, but has been left in the shade by its continental counterparts.
The ancient oak, at the heart of Sherwood Forest, was named England’s Tree of the Year last year, but was beaten into sixth place while bidding to become European Tree of the Year.
Open to votes, our very own landmark picked up 9,941, but was way behind the eventual winner from Estonia, named ‘Oak tree on football
field’, which pooled almost 60,000.
The Woodland Trust’s ancient tree expert, Jill Butler, said: “It is clear that some of our European cousins place huge cultural importance on their special trees and it’s something we need to adopt in the UK too.
“We have a higher proportion of ancient and other veteran trees than anywhere else in Northern Europe and we need to do much more to recognise their value and improve their protection.”
It was first time an entry from England was submitted, and there was some success on the domestic front, with the Major Oak being the highest placed UK entrant, with Scotland finishing 9th and Wales 10th.
Coun John Knight, committee chairman for culture, at Nottinghamshire County Council said: “We’d like to thank everyone who has taken the time to vote, just a couple of months after the Major Oak was named as England’s Tree of the Year.
“We’re very pleased that the Major Oak has enjoyed a high profile throughout and we hope it will encourage our European neighbours to visit the iconic Major Oak in Robin Hood’s county.”
With Estonia taking the title, others that finished ahead of the Major Oak included trees in Hungary, Spain, Poland, and Czech Republic.