Forest of Dean & Wye Valley tour guides often have to explain to walkers that there are very few ancient trees to discover in the Forest. Trees were chopped down extensively for charcoal for the iron industry. We owe a great debt to Admiral Nelson for campaigning to protect the oaks for ship-building, hence the impressive oaks that are just over 200 years old.
There is however, one remaining tree which rightly deserves its mighty title — the King Yew, found in East Wood near Tidenham Chase.
This area is widely enjoyed by walkers as it is criss-crossed by paths such as Offa’s Dyke and the Gloucestershire Way. Lancaut Nature Reserve — Site of Special Scientific Interest — is very near, as is the Devil’s pulpit, providing breath-taking views over Tintern Abbey.
Walkers measured the girth of the King Yew and found that it was 7.5 metres in circumference!