For more than a century Croxley Green has had a strong tradition of planting trees on the common to commemorate royal and national events. Following an article by Councillor Janet Martin in the local Parish Council magazine which mentioned nine trees, project volunteers Fred and Joyce walked around The Green to further investigate its special trees.
Seven of the trees commemorate various important dates relating to the Royal family from Queen Victoria through to Queen Elizabeth II and, to our surprise, include an oak planted to commemorate the Coronation of Edward VIII in 1936 - a coronation that never took place! The tree was planted just one day before Edward VIII's abdication. Though left to grow, the original tree died and was replaced.
In total there are currently 12 commemorative trees around The Green, most of which have commemorative plaques. A tree by the war memorial is a memorial to those killed in WWI, WWII and the Korean war, another tree commemorates the end of WWII and a third the 50th anniversary of VE Day. One tree commemorates the death of Sir Winston Churchill and the most recent tree was planted to commemorate the Millennium and the gathering of 5000 people to celebrate the event on the Common.
Many of the tree planting ceremonies have been recorded on camera. One of these old photographs obtained from the local library by our fellow volunteer, Brian Thomson, depicts the planting of an oak in 1911 to commemorate the coronation of King George V and was attended by a large group of the local school children. It is interesting to note how few trees there were until the commemorative trees were planted.
The Special Trees and Woods Project would like to thank Croxley Green library for permission to use the photos from the early 1900s.
The trees can be seen at Croxley Green. Please park considerately around The Green.