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More about the Yew Tree Avenue in Clipsham

 

An ideal walk for young children, or those wanting a gentle ramble

 

Click here to find out about other walks in the area

 

Yew Tree Avenue, Stamford, Lincolnshire, gentle walking ideal for children

 

Amos Alexander,  head forester on  the Clipsham Estate during the 19th century, started a hobby in 1870 . Creating shapes and figures by clipping the yew trees that grew outside his home at the gatehouse. The owner on Clipsham Hall was delighted and he instructed Amos to cut figures on all of the trees along the carriage drive to his home depicting items of local interest and record family events. The Yew Tree Avenue was born.

The clipping was continued by Amos's son Charles and then by a local villager but the avenue became overgrown during World War Two. It was then restored after the Forestry Commission who took over the site in 1955. Trained staff continued the tradition.

New shapes were added, the current ones maintained, and the half-mile long avenue now contains almost 150 clipped yews, some of which are 200 years old.

The shapes commemorate historical events or people including an anchor, a windmill, the three bears, a deer, an elephant and a chair where visitors can sit and take a rest. One tree commemorates the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, another the first moon landing by the American astronaut Neil Armstrong, while others honour the present owner of Clipsham Hall Sir David Davenport-Handley, the famous Spitfire from the Battle of Britain, and Amos Alexander himself whose artistry and imagination were responsible for the avenue that visitors enjoy today.

The trees are clipped in September each year and new designs are added regularly.

Click here to see a map of the location.

The car park is set in a quiet open area on the edge of the wood, providing year round parking and access to the avenue.

The Yew Tree Avenue car park is one mile north-east of Clipsham Village (3 miles east of the A1 at Stretton).