Was Benjamin Disraeli the first conservationist Prime Minister? He certainly had a passion for trees, as his care for his woodlands around Hughenden Manor shows. Among these woods is the "German Forest", a wooded area planted by Disraeli and his wife, Mary Anne, who did much of the planning. The wood was inspired by the Black Forest of South Germany, a dense and mysterious coniferous forest thought to be one of the most beautiful in Europe, which the pair fell in love with.
Disraeli's woodland certainly captures the atmosphere of the original and perhaps something of its patron too. As National Trust volunteer John Willson, says, "I'm almost sure I caught a glimpse of a felt-hatted, yellow-waistcoated figure deep in thought wandering through the woods there the other day". Perhaps the former statesman had come back to check on his favourite haunt.
Interested in other woods with stories to tell? Why not investigate Angling Spring Wood?