It is estimated that between 70-80% of Europe's ancient trees may be in Britain - a surprising statistic. Two British charities are currently working to identify every single one. The National Trust, Britain's conservation charity, has signed on to a five-year census of ancient trees organized by a sister charity, the Woodland Trust. It seems there is more at stake than just the trees. According to the Woodland Trust, they are mini-ecosystems in their own right, and if we lose these trees, then Great Britain will also lose a lot of its indigenous species.
An English oak can live for 900 years - the saying is "300 years growing, 300 years living, 300 years dying". Britain's most ancient tree, a yew, could be 3,000 years old. These beautiful giants are the last remnants of the forests which once covered all Europe.