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Tree of the month: Cheshire Champion Oak

Just when some of us were thinking “surely there are no more big oaks to discover?” Two come along at once!

The privately owned Cholmondeley Castle Estate has recently been opening its gardens to the public and has a Tree Festival planned for this September. During a visit and training session with new ATI volunteer Verifier Gary Newsome, we were advised by castle staff to inspect two old oak trees in the parkland.

The first tree was a jaw-dropping maiden with a girth of 8.47m whilst the second a tree that appeared to have been partially wind-thrown a long time ago was a very conservative 7.75m, although 9m can easily be recorded due to its uprooted base. This has created a tree of great character as can be seen from the images on the record.

The biggest oak in Cheshire is considered to be the remnants of the Marton Oak, a sessile oak with a girth of 14m. Both of the Cholmondeley Castle trees are pedunculate and are bigger than the next best maiden pedunculate oak recorded.

There are many more trees of interest to record here and we are looking forward to discover champions of other species!