Greater recognition of value of yews in Welsh churches urged

A campaign is under way to ensure the many ancient yews in the grounds of Church in Wales properties remain well cared for.

Ancient yew in churchyard, Church Island, Anglesey - image:Denis Egan
Ancient yew in churchyard, Church Island, Anglesey - image:Denis Egan

During next week's Cherishing Churchyards Week (7-15 June), the church will send out certificates to parishes and communities which have some of the oldest yews, and also giving information on how best to manage them.

The work is supported by the churchyard conservation organisation Caring for God's Acre, and by the Ancient Yew Group (AYG).

According to an AYG survey, the Church in Wales owns 334 yew trees over 500 years old, 101 of which are believed to be over 800 years old.

Alex Glanville, head of property services at the Church in Wales, said: "We have a unique inheritance that is worthy of recognition and careful stewardship. However, very few of these trees are covered by Tree Preservation Orders, largely because they are not generally judged to be under threat and because of the costs of issuing such orders."


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