9th November 2023

Valuing Ancient and Veteran Trees

Ancient Oak, Thoresby2 – Copy
Ancient Oak, Thoresby2 – Copy

During October and bang in the middle of fungi season officers from the Sherwood Forest Trust, The Woodland Trust, Greenwood Community Forest, and Severn Trent Water were privileged to visit the ancient trees of the Thoresby Estate. We were invited to attend a two-day training event with Louise Hackett and Dr Emma Gilmartin from the Woodland Trust to better understand and value ancient and veteran trees.

It’s safe to say that we were all absolutely blown away by the exceptional and irreplaceable ancient woodands of Thoresby. Like the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve the woodlands formed part of the Sherwood Royal Hunting Forest and has trees that are up to 1000 years old!

The focus of the course was on identifying an ancient or veteran tree, recording its location, assessing the importance of the many micro-habitats (holes, hollows, loose bark, deadwood, decaying features and cavities) and advising landowners in how they are able to help protect the tree.

Ideally, all of our local ancient trees will be recorded on the Woodland Trust’s Ancient Tree Inventory (ATI). This helps to protect them and we need your help to find them! Find out more about ancient trees and watch videos on how you can help record these magnificent trees on the ATI web page. https://ati.woodlandtrust.org.uk/

I really believe that everyone attending the course felt a deep kinship with these magnificent trees and their significance in terms of ecology, culture and heritage. Here in Sherwood they help us to feel a sense of place. Not only do they stabilise soils, provide rare and critical ecosystems, capture carbon and help with plant pollination but they are incredibly beautiful.

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