Ancient trees and the Spanish Armada

One of the loveliest things about visiting Croft Castle in Herefordshire is to see the many ancient trees planted there. Majestic chestnuts and oaks some going back hundreds of years.

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A story tells that sweet chestnuts were taken from captured Spanish ships and planted at Croft between 1580 and 1680. The avenue is said to represent the formal battle plan of the Spanish Armada with rows of chestnuts representing the Spanish ships and oaks the English. This was the original formal approach to the castle.

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The Spanish chestnut Avenue at Croft Castle, Herefordshire is an avenue of pollarded sweet chestnuts (Castanea sativa) stretching for 1km to the west of the castle.

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An avenue of Limes are also impressive, though these are much younger and there is also an orchard of Hawthorns, thought to be root stock of fruit trees that have since died.

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If you want to see these majestic trees then follow the green trail.

If you enjoy a walk, long or short, then have a look at Jo’s site where you are welcome to join in.

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Published by

Heyjude

I now live in the UK, but spent several years travelling and then living in South Africa. I now look forward to a long and leisurely retirement doing what I like most - gardening, photography, walking and travelling.

36 thoughts on “Ancient trees and the Spanish Armada”

  1. I love those straight avenues of trees. Reminded me of similar places in France.
    You are getting some good November colours too, Jude. Unfortunately, it’s been too wet here for me to take the camera out.
    Regards as always, Pete. x

  2. Lovely gallery, Jude. It looks like a beautiful place to be.
    It’s quite stormy and occasionally also wet in Cley today.
    Best regards,
    Dina & co

    1. It is a lovely place Dina. Always very peaceful and I love the trees and the views over the countryside. Hope you stayed warm and safe today, better keep those Bookfayries indoors, we don’t want them blown away 😉

  3. They are lovely photos, and I do love trees … but quite frankly Jude, I don’t know one tree from another.
    Having said that, a tree that is several hundred years old is mighty impressive.

    1. I love these deciduous trees and walking amongst them. I’m not so keen on the fir tree forests where it is usually too dark and silent and somewhat eerie.

      1. I agree with you. I’m not so fond of fir trees either, but it’s purely for superficial reasons. They simply lack the prettiness and seasonal drama of the deciduous.
        I guess I’m a tree snob 😉

  4. I’ve seen lots of sweet chestnuts on the ground this year, but none of them swollen and ripe just little, pale efforts. It’s a strange year. Your lime walk is gorgeous but nothing beats the English Oak to my mind, grand old beauties x:-)x

    1. I love that avenue, still a bit green on this day and since then we have had wet and windy weather so I’ll probably miss the golden stage this year.

  5. What a great day you chose to visit ! The old oaks and chestnut specimens are just monumental . My day in Spring turned out the greyest of days but the carpet of snowdrops was a lovely sight !

  6. I would love to walk this trail, how beautiful these photos Jude. Fascinating history about the Spanish Armada too. Herefordshire is a place hubby and I hope to explore much more of and soon 🙂 xx

    1. It is a very pretty county, very rural with the lovely black and white villages. Can’t say I am fond of Hereford though. You planning a holiday this way?

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