Holly trees planted to mark Queen’s Jubilee

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holly trees will be planted on the Peak District National Park’s North Lees estate to celebrate the Queen’s 60th year on the throne.

Members of the public are invited to join the planting of the 60 trees any time between 10am and 1pm on Saturday, December 8 at the aptly-named Hollin Bank site in the shadow of Stanage Edge, above Hathersage.

North Lees estate ranger Bill Gordon said: “This is a fitting site to link with Britain’s heritage, not only for the past 60 years, but well beyond.

Hollin is a traditional dialect word for holly, which was used as animal fodder as far back as medieval times, so Hollin Bank would have been a site where holly was grown for sheep and cattle.

“It was also once the site of Stanage Cottage, built for the gamekeeper on the original shooting estate.

“It became known as Martha Furniss’s cottage and then Hugh Thorp’s cottage after the people who lived there in the 1800s.”

Bill added: “Hugh’s wife lived to her 90s and remembered being at North Lees Hall when Charlotte Bronte visited. So it is a historic site, and although the cottage is long gone, it harks back to the times of Queen Victoria, who also celebrated her diamond jubilee.

“Local schoolchildren, parish councillors and Peak District National Park Authority representatives have been invited to help plant the saplings, and I hope other people will come along to help make a link between the area’s past and future.”

Funding for the holly saplings comes from the Dark Peak Nature Improvement Area Partnership, which aims to create and restore native woodland, scrub, grassland, bog and heath.