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Read the National Association of Local Councils tree charter - click here

Tree Wardens are:-

Stelling Minnis - Nick Smith (limited responsibilities)

Upper Hardres - John Pitcher  See Village Magazine for contact details or click here


Jump to:  Introduction    Trees with preservation orders

                Asian Longhorn Beetle    Harlequin Ladybird

                2006 Veteran Trees Project + web site link





Jon Stokes, National Co-ordinator for the Tree Council and pioneer of the Scheme, who is absolutely passionate about trees, gave a brilliant walk and talk around Brabourne Park, pointing out, amongst many other things, 1,000 year old oaks and an ancient Hornbeam Wood.  The wood is now fenced off from the public for its protection.


With current legislation, ancient trees are regarded as dangerous, dying or dead, and cannot be protected by Tree Preservation Orders.  Jon is desperate to change this and is campaigning for special protected status (Green Monuments) for ancient and historic trees.   See 2006 Veteran Tree Survey Project below.

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Canterbury City and Folkestone & Hythe District Councils planning depatments hold definitive maps of trees with preservation orders in their areas.


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An immediate worry is a nasty beetle.  The Asian Longhorn Beetle to be precise.  It was first sighted in 2001 in the South East and has apparently appeared again.  It is over an inch long, shiny black body marked with white patches.  It has long striped antennae and substantial mandibles, with which it chews through bark to lay it’s eggs.  Apparently the larvae do most of the damage, boring large oval holes deep into the wood, eventually killing the tree, and it is not too particular as to which tree it attacks.

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Another nasty, which has landed, especially in the South East again, is the Harlequin Ladybird.  It would seem there are 46 species of ladybird (Coccinellidae) in Britain but the arrival of the Harlequin Ladybird could jeopardise the existence of many of these.  It is larger than our ladybirds and is either black with orange spots or orange with black spots.


There is a Harlequin Ladybird Survey Website ( and everyone is being asked to get involved and monitor sightings of these beasties.  So please keep your eyes peeled.


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The Woodland Trust and Ancient Tree Forum are calling on all UK national, regional and local government bodies, and other organisations, to create a new designation of ‘historic tree’ to help protect these trees from being destroyed by development pressures, intensive farming etc.  They also want to make changes to tree preservation order (TPO) legislation so that dead and dying ancient trees are eligible for protection.


They are working together to create a national living inventory of ancient trees, and to this end BTCV (British Trust for Conservation Volunteers) and the Kent Trust Woodland Group are carrying out the above survey and are calling on all local tree wardens to help.  If you have a tree or trees on your land, or have seen trees whilst out walking that you think may be worthy of being measured and registered, please let us know (contact details at top of this page and are also published in the Parish Magazine).


This is a huge project in which anyone can get involved and such an important one if there are to be ancient trees left for future generations to enjoy, and of course, protect.


If you would like more information on this survey log onto It’s fascinating!

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Page designed and produced for Stelling Minnis Parish Council by Nick Smith  - 10th November 2004

Updated 1 February 2021


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