Tall order of measuring the mightiest oak
By Western Daily Press | Thursday, August 02, 2012, 06:30
An official team of tree measurers have been to Stourhead in Wiltshire this week to see if the famous country estate contains Britain's tallest oak tree.
Representatives of the European Champion Tree Forum measured the monster oak from the ground by laser and will return next month to climb the tree to measure it properly.
Situated just outside of the landscape garden, the oak is one of a group of very tall old oak trees, which were planted within the Stourhead estate many years ago. The oak was hard to measure, as it is one of several growing close together on a steep bank.
"The thought that we might have the tallest oak in the country is an exciting prospect" said Alan Power, Stourhead's garden and estate manager.
"We are really fortunate that we have a number of exotic champion trees at Stourhead and to now have, what we hope to be, a native champion tree is very special," he added.
The 2,650-acre estate around Stourhead house and garden is very diverse, from conifer forests and ancient trees at Park Hill Camp, to chalk downland and open farmland.
A huge Oriental plane tree in Corsham Court, a stately home in north Wiltshire, was named the most spreading in the country last year. Planted in 1757, it has an average spread of more than 210ft and no other tree reaches further from its trunk.
The tallest tree in Britain is the Stronardron Douglas Fir which stands at a staggering 209ft. It was planted at Dunans castle in Glendaruel, Scotland, in 1849.