Norfolk or Essex could claim Tree of the Year 2019

Two of the region's trees have made it onto the shortlist in England's Tree of the Year competition, run by the Woodland Trust.

The Colchester Castle Sycamore Credit: Marion Sidebottom

The Colchester Castle Sycamore, Colchester, Essex

The story of the sycamore, growing on top of Colchester Castle's south-east tower, is that it was planted by the mayor's daughter to commemorate the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815. It had to be removed in 1985 for wall repairs but it survived and was put back into its original position in 1987.

Twisted, Thetford, Norfolk Credit: Marion Sidebottom

Twisted, Thetford, Norfolk

A Scots pine, in a small area of woodland south of Thetford, has grown bent round in a loop. It is thought that the tree has performed this feat entirely naturally, bent down by wind or snow and then reaching towards the light once the pressure was lifted.

"The Tree of the Year competition is all about highlighting and celebrating the nation's most remarkable and special trees.

"We have a fantastic number of ancient and veteran trees and many notable urban trees.

"Trees across the country are constantly under threat of felling due to inappropriate developments.

"The Tree of the Year competition is all about helping to raise the profile of trees in order to offer them better protection.

"All of our shortlisted trees look amazing and each of them has a wonderful story to tell. We're sure that the public will show their passion and get behind their favourite."

– Adam Cormack, Woodland Trust

The Woodland Trust's Tree of the Year competition runs in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, with a public vote in each country selecting a champion to go forward to the 2020 European Tree of the Year contest.

The awards aim to raise awareness of the importance of trees, and also provide a £1,000 tree care award for each winner, which could be spent on work to benefit the tree's health, signage, or a community celebration.

You can find out more about the shortlist and vote for your favourite tree here from 9am on Monday September 9 until voting closes at noon on September 27.