Tree of the Year 2017
Gilwell Oak has been crowned UK Tree of the Year 2017!
This year’s winner with 1792 votes is a marvellous oak tree located in the heart of Gilwell Park in Essex. The British public casted their vote to not only celebrate the visuals of the tree but the fantastic story it tells. The Gilwell Oak has overseen the growth of a local scout group since early 20th century and is still regarded as a tribute to the scouting movement today.
The Gilwell Oak won the England shortlist and was chosen by the panel of experts to be our UK Tree of the Year. The tree will represent the UK at the European Tree of the Year in 2018.
Winners of the national shortlists
Big Tree, Scotland
The Scottish winner with 655 was a 200 year-old sycamore tree named The Big Tree, in Orkney. It has been a meeting spot for generations of Orcadians. The Big Tree was originally part of a trio however in 1870s a new owner of the land cut down two of the trees as he was planning to cut the third an outcry and protest from the public saved the final tree, which still stands strong today.
Erskine House Tree, Northern Ireland
The Erskine House Tree topped the Northern Irish shortlist with 1732 votes. The wonderful tree is located next to Belfast City Hospital and provides a moment of tranquillity for both doctors and patients. The tree’s history is remarkable as in 1966 Greek doctor Dimitrios Oreopoulos undertook kidney research at Queens University and took his knowledge to Canada where he developed a new form of kidney dialysis. He was rewarded with seeds from the Plane Tree of Kos; just one of those tree seeds survived – the great Erskine House Tree.
Hollow Tree, Wales
The Hollow Oak won the Wales shortlist with 1018 votes. It has graced the grounds of 18th century Gnoll Estate Country Park and has managed to survive being hollow since 1950s! . Generations of children have used this tree to hide in with Neath Port Talbot’s older residents holding fond memories of this incredible ancient oak.
A bit of ‘Tree LC’
The winning trees in each country will benefit from a Tree Care award of £1,000, with any runner-up trees receiving 1000 separate votes or more get a £500 Tree Care Award (subject to availability).
The award can be used to arrange a health check from an arboriculturalist, provide interpretation or educational materials or simply just hold a community celebratory event in honour of the tree.
Once we had our country winners a panel of experts selected one tree from this public vote, the Gilwell Oak, to represent the UK in the European Tree of the Year competition in February 2018. It is organised by the Environmental Partnership Association. Please read our Terms and Conditions for more details.
Supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
Thank you for voting for your favourite trees in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.