Cragside Scots Pine becomes tallest in the UK

A Scots pine at the National Trust’s Cragside site in Northumberland has become the tallest native conifer in the UK.

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A Scots pine at the National Trust’s Cragside site in Northumberland has become the tallest native conifer in the UK.

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Measuring 40 metres (over 131ft) tall the conifer is Cragside’s fifth champion tree and is the same height as 10 London double-decker buses.

Two-hundred champion trees can be found on National Trust land, including Britain’s tallest.

That honour belongs to an English or Common Oak at Stourhead in Wiltshire, which measures 40.4m (over 132 feet).

Christopher Clues, Tree and Woodland Manager at Cragside, said, “We’re thrilled that Cragside is home to the tallest native conifer in the UK; it is a truly wonderful specimen.

“This Scots pine is not like other commercially grown Scots pine trees, which are usually grown and thinned out after 30 years; this one has been left to its own devices and has a deep bushy crown to it.

The wooded landscape at Cragside was originally planted under the direction of the Victorian owners, Lord and Lady Armstrong.

The woodland is now the backbone of the landscape. Made up of native and exotic conifers as well as dark green yews, Douglas firs and wellingtonias, the precious gardens at Cragside are Grade I listed

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Brian Muelaner, Ancient Tree Adviser for the National Trust, commented, “This is a surprising result as you’d think the tallest Scots pine in the UK would be found in Scotland, but then Cragside is not that far from Scotland really.

“This exciting new record adds to the 200 champion trees already found on Trust land. It’s through the National Trust’s unique ownership that we can look to protect each of these trees.”

Champion trees have been recorded since 1988 by the Tree Register.

To be registered as a champion, the tree must be the tallest or widest of its kind recorded in the county, country or the UK.

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Find out more about the Tree Register on their website.