Growing out of a flood plain of the river Thames, the gnarled and ancient Ankerwycke Yew is famous not just for its age, but also for the important historical moments that supposedly took place at the site.
Officially listed as a Great British Tree, the Ankerwycke Yew is believed to be between 1,400- 2,000 years old. Growing in the grounds of an old nunnery, the arbor has grown huge and wild over the centuries. The massive trunk, which appears to be comprised of countless smaller trunks melted together, is a whopping 26 feet in diameter and topped by a shaggy canopy of pine needles.
It may not be the most photogenic arbor in the land, but it may have been present at some of the country’s most historic moments. It is widely understood that the sealing of the Magna Carta took place in the shadow of the yew’s branches, and a more apocryphal story says that Henry the VIII met his future wife Anne Boleyn near the tree as well.
Both due to its age and its infamy the tree is a nationally protected landmark and features a vague commemorative plaque nearby. The tree is still alive and well and just waiting for the next monumental meeting beneath its needles.