Nellie’s Tree reaches for votes

A beech tree grafted into an N-shape to woo a woman called Nellie almost 100 years ago is in the running for the European Tree of the Year title.

Nellie’s Tree at Aberford was formed by Vic Stead from three beech saplings on the route he walked along the old colliery railway to court a young lady called Nellie.

He grafted one sapling between the other two to form the letter N to woo his sweetheart.

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It was a move that worked as they went on to marry, and the tree is a popular site for proposals today.

The English entry for the UK title secured the most votes of any tree in the competition and is now in the European contest.

Kaye Brennan, lead campaigner for the Woodland Trust said of the English winner: “There was a lot of love for this northern gem.

“Its popularity is a tale of romance and has really captured the public’s interest to poll the most votes.

She urged people to help select the tree in the European tree of the year awards.

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