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Forestry and Land Scotland’s North Region team is urging everyone to vote – before noon on 24 September - for another highland stalwart to become Woodland Trust Scotland's Tree of the Year 2020.

The Lord President’s Oak, which stands in the middle of a railway bridge, is in the heart of Culloden forest and on the path to the famous St Mary’s Clootie Well.

Laura McNally, FLS Area Visitor Services Manager, who nominated the tree, said;

“We had a big hit last year with the ‘last Ent of Affric’ winning the title – it was a really popular win and seemed to strike a chord with lots of people.

“This year’s nominee could definitely also be classed as one of that very special arboreal family. Being where it is, slap bang in the middle of the path, it’s almost as though it’s standing guard, a lone sentinel protecting the forest beyond from unwelcome visitors. Or maybe making sure that only the worthy are allowed to approach the Clootie Well?

“In any event, the fact that it has survived add thrived in the middle of a bridge helps make it such a unique, magnificent specimen. It has so many links with local history and is so well known locally that I thought it should definitely be in the running for the Tree of the Year.”

The tree takes its name from the Lord President’s seat - a large stone at the base of the tree that formerly marked a local view point across the Moray Firth that was popular with land owner Lord Culloden (1685-1747)  and his wife. Lord Culloden was Lord President of the Court of Session.

In 1855 the stone was moved to its present position to make way for the Highland railway being built.


Notes to editors

  1. Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) manages forests and land owned by Scottish Ministers in a way that supports and enables economically sustainable forestry; conserves and enhances the environment; delivers benefits for people and nature; and supports Scottish Ministers in their stewardship of Scotland's national forests and land.

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  3. Media enquiries to Paul Munro, Media Manager, Forestry and Land Scotland Media Office 0131 370 5059 or