Gardens Illustrated
Cubbington Pear Tree sapling
© HS2

HS2 tree lives on after being felled

Published: October 26, 2020 at 11:44 am

An ancient pear tree that was felled to make way for the HS2 development will live on in the form of saplings

Saplings from a 250-year old tree that was felled to make way for the HS2 railway development are to ensure the ancient tree will live on.

Where support is needed, use a single round, wooden stake.
© Andrew Montgomery

The Cubbington Pear Tree in Warwickshire was named tree of the year in 2015 but was on land used for the £100 billion railway development. As compensation for its felling, over 40 new trees have been grown from cuttings taken from the tree, which was situated in a hedgerow south of South Cubbington Wood.

It was in 2014 that Paul Labous from the Shuttleworth College started to graft the tree from cuttings. In 2015 he confirmed the DNA from the parent tree was true to type for grafting and the first tree was given back to the community.

There will be 6.2 hectares of broadleaved wood planted around South Cubbington Wood to replace the two hectares removed for HS2. Two hectares of ancient woodland soils are being 'translocated' to join up South Cubbington Wood and Weston Wood.


The Cubbington Pear Tree was located on private land, but near to a public footpath. It was though to be the UK's oldest wild pear tree. The pear tree was unable to be relocated as the lower trunk was hollow and the stump and roots were planned to be relocated within South Cubbington Wood for wildlife. The tree was cut down on 20 October 2020.


Daisy Bowie-Sell is digital editor of Gardens Illustrated. She has previously worked as a journalist for publications including the Daily Telegraph, WhatsOnStage and Time Out London


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