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The Much Marcle Yew

Ancient tree/multi-functional garden pavilion...

30 January 2009

This yew found in the churchyard of Much Marcle in Herefordshire is almost 30 feet in circumference and certainly one of the more impressive specimens to be found in the churchyards around the UK. The interior has even been fitted with a bench for the parishioners, should they wish to take shelter under the huge canopy.

It is one of the trees featured in Thomas Pakenham's book "Meetings with Remarkable Trees"; Pakenham describes how the tree was thought of by Christians as akin to the head of Janus in Roman Mythology:

"Life was the meaning of the tree that seemed itself immortal. Death was the meaning of the poisonous, scarlet berries and the tough pink wood, as springy as steel, used for spears, arrows and bows."

The Much Marcle Yew

Yew tree, Much Marcle churchyard. Photo ATH/Keith Arrowsmith.