Ancient trees

Ancient tree

Ancient and veteran trees of the New Forest

There are probably more ancient and veteran trees in the New Forest than anywhere else in northern Europe. Around 1,000 have so far been recorded, but there are still more to be found. Until now they have never been fully surveyed and listed.


Within the woodlands of the open forest the oldest trees are beech or oaks (with the occasional yew). Those with girths greater than about 5.5 metres probably date from before 1625, when intensive felling for navy shipbuilding began.

The famous Knightwood Oak, for example, with a girth of 7.38 metres, is believed to be about 600 years old. There are also large numbers of ancient and veteran hollies, with the oldest so far dated being from the early 1700s.

  1. Ancient trees
  2. Ancient and veteran trees of the New Forest (you are here)
  3. The New Forest ancient tree hunt


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