The Woodland Trust says it is “shocked and upset” that HS2 Ltd has today felled the historic Cubbington Pear, especially as a Government response to a public petition to save it said ‘the stump and rooting structure would be relocated providing an opportunity for the parent tree to regrow or ‘coppice’’.

The tree, which won the Trust’s Tree of the Year competition in 2015, was at least 200 years old - and a much loved local landmark. The Trust, its supporters and many other local campaigners had lobbied for the tree to be saved.

Woodland Trust ecologist Luci Ryan said:

“We are shocked and upset that HS2 has felled the historic Cubbington Pear, despite a long battle to save it.

“When we told HS2 of our concerns about the complications of coppicing and moving the Cubbington Pear tree as it is in fact hollow, we were surprised that they told us that it would be felled and used as deadwood.

“This is in contradiction to what the Government told the public would happen. HS2 and the Department for Transport should be held to account for misleading the public in this way."

The Trust is asking people to write to the Department of Transport and demand that the Government holds HS2 Ltd to account for its destruction of ancient woods and trees. 

Notes to editors

For more on this release contact Andy Bond on 07725480434.

About the Woodland Trust

The Woodland Trust is the largest woodland conservation charity in the UK. It has over 500,000 supporters. It wants to see a UK rich in native woods and trees for people and wildlife.

The Trust has three key aims:  

  1. protect ancient woodland which is rare, unique and irreplaceable
  2. restoration of damaged ancient woodland, bringing precious pieces of our natural history back to life
  3. plant native trees and woods with the aim of creating resilient landscapes for people and wildlife.

Established in 1972, the Woodland Trust now has over 1,000 sites in its care covering approximately 29,000 hectares. Access to its woods is free so everyone can benefit from woods and trees.