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Carrying the canopy overhead

Introduction Propping Whole Trees Keeping a Clear Path
Carrying the Canopy Overhead A Single Support Candidates for Future Propping?

At Doveridge in Derbyshire, Much Marcle in Herefordshire and Bentley in Hampshire, branches are kept above head height on timber frames.

The Doveridge Yew was noted in 1883 when the churchyard was visited by the North Staffordshire Naturalists’ Field Club.  They recorded “a churchyard as historic as the church itself” containing “a yew of enormous growth”.  A walk led by Rev. C.F.L. Barnwell in 1904 reported that the “magnificent yew tree……spreads its branches further than any other yew tree in Derbyshire”.  This is also the tree beneath which, in legend, Robin Hood and Maid Marian were betrothed.  Although most branches are held above the frame, some have been allowed to reach the ground.

Doveridge Yew - 1999 © Tim Hills Doveridge Yew - 1999 © Tim Hills
Doveridge Yew - 1999 © Tim Hills
Doveridge Yew - 1999 © Tim Hills

The Much Marcle Yew was visited by the Woolhope Society in 1899. Their written record of the visit describes the “fine yew in the churchyard”.   Arthur Mee, writing for The King’s England 40 years later, was not so restrained, recording an “amazing veteran, a vigorous yew with a spread of branches 70ft across”.

Much Marcle Yew -1998 © Tim Hills
Much Marcle Yew -1998 © Tim Hills

The path to Bentley church is lined with yews several hundred years old. The branches of two of these trees are supported on oak beams; the label is a warning to ‘mind your head’.

Bentley - 2000 © Tim Hills
Bentley - 2000 © Tim Hills

Introduction Propping Whole Trees Keeping a Clear Path
Carrying the Canopy Overhead A Single Support Candidates for Future Propping?