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Crashing Down after 1300 years

A branch is winched off the trunk, which legend has Oliver Cromwell once sat under, as the oak comes to an end.

Ignoble end for Feltwell’s ancient oak.

The ancient oak at Feltwell, a village landmark for possibly 1300 years, came to an ignoble end yesterday when it was pulled down in the interests of safety.

The fate of the old oak, which marked the eastern entrance to the village standing on a grassy mound at the junction of the Brandon-Methwold and Southery roads, was sealed at a parish meeting last September. A vote of 15-12 went in favour of it coming sown.

In its place a young oak sapling will be planted, possibly by the village’s oldest inhabitant, sometime this year.

The tree was torn apart with ropes on a winch by a contractor. It split down the middle and the fact that it had had its days was plain to anyone. The whole centre of the ancient trunk was full of dust and soil and completely rotted away. All the roots had rotted, too.


The felling of the tree was quite unceremonious. Few people witnessed it, although when the word spread several went to get pieces for souvenirs

The mound on which it stood is to be removed and replaced by a smaller one and a retaining wall will be built around it.

Mr H. C. Walden, who strongly opposed the move at the parish meeting and suggested trying to enlist the aid of the Council for the Preservation of Rural England, admitted yesterday that it had now been proved the tree was in an unsafe condition.

However, Feltwell will have a reminder of its ancient tree. A picture of it in its heyday hangs as the inn sign of the nearby Oak Hotel

EDP Friday, April 24, 1964

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