National Trust veteran horse chestnut confirmed as country's largest

A 300-year-old horse chestnut on the National Trust's Hughenden estate in Buckinghamshire has been declared a "champion tree" as the largest-girthed tree of its kind in the UK.

Image: Press Association
Image: Press Association

The veteran Aesculus hippocastanum has a diameter of 7.33 metres, ensuring its its champion tree status on the National Tree Register.

Ranger Steve Kirkpatrick said: "We are so proud of this tree. It has reached this size because it's been allowed to grow unhindered, was planted in good soil, and because it's on a flood plain it has benefitted from plenty of nutrients over the years."

He added: "It's impossible to date precisely but it's certainly over 300 years old, so it pre-dates many of the other trees at Hughenden which were planted by Benjamin Disraeli, who lived here for 33 years."

Previously the largest known horse chestnut in the country was at Whitchurch in Hampshire, with a girth of 7.20m.

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