Sycamore Gap tree: Hopes for 'new future' as salvaged seeds and cuttings show signs of life

There was a national outcry following the felling of the tree in September. Credit: PA

The viability of seeds and cuttings salvaged from the felled Sycamore Gap tree are showing early signs of success.

There was a national outcry in September when the much-loved, 200-year-old Northumberland tree was found to have been cut down in mysterious circumstances.

The National Trust, which owns the land on which it stood, took remains from the tree to its specialist plant nursery and announced on Wednesday 6 December that more than 30% of the mature seeds and half of the cuttings collected are showing signs of life - meaning descendants of the tree could grow.

It is also hoped the trunk of the original tree will regrow, but it may be up to three years before this is known.

The 200-year-old Northumberland landmark lies beside the trunk where it once stood. Credit: ITV News

Director of gardens and parklands at the National Trust, Andy Jasper, said: "Over the next year, we'll be doing all we can to nurture the seeds and cuttings in the hope that some will grow into strong, sturdy saplings - providing a new future for this much-loved tree.

"As with many things in landscape restoration, we need to be patient and take the time to let nature do its thing."

The National Trust is working with the Northumberland National Park on a 'fitting tribute' to the tree, details of which they say will be announced in the New Year.

Andrew Poad, general manager of the site, said an appeal will be launched to go towards plans for the site and for the wood from the felled trunk, adding: "We're incredibly grateful for the many commemorative ideas we've received since the tree was felled.

"The creativity and thought behind some of these ideas has been inspiring and is an indication of just how important this tree was for so many people."

Historic England is assisting the partnership on accurately dating the tree and said it hoped to have the results soon.

The partnership is inviting the public to submit their photos and memories of the tree to

A man in his 60s and two men in their 30s, who were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage, remain on police bail. A teenager who was also arrested was told he will face no further action.

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