Oak trees are part of Britain’s cultural and natural heritage.
From Henry VIII’s ships, to the carved timbers in the Houses of Parliament, to furniture in our homes, over the centuries oak trees have been part of our lives.
Our favourite childhood stories, such as Robin Hood, feature an oak tree and indeed, thousands of people visit the Major Oak in Sherwood Forest each year.
Across Britain from the Atlantic oakwoods in Scotland to the New Forest, to city parks, oak is one of our most common and loved broadleaved trees.
Oak trees enhance landscapes; support wildlife; provide playgrounds for children; and offer shade and relaxation for city dwellers and workers.
Oak trees make up 16% of our broadleaf woodland, with about 120.8 million oaks in woodlands.
An oak tree supports some 284 species of insects and 324 species of lichen. It also provides food for birds and mammals.
Over 49,000 ancient, venerable and notable oak trees have been recorded in the Ancient Tree Inventory and England has more ancient oaks than all other European countries combined.
As well as being of high social and environmental value, forest oaks also have commercial value.
Environmental pressures, such as climate change, pollution and drought, can make our oak trees more vulnerable to pests and diseases.
These include oak processionary moth, acute oak decline, xylella, root-attacking species of honey fungus and powdery mildews.
Together these are threatening the future of our oak trees.
Over the last five years, the members of the Action Oak Partnership have invested over £10 million in research on pests and diseases and managing the oak processionary moth outbreak in the London area.
Collectively, however, we need to do more.
Everyone can help to protect our oak trees.
The programme of activities which the Action Oak Partnership has identified to protect oak trees includes:
To protect our oak trees, we need your support including more partners plus funding, sponsorship, time, expertise and contacts.
If you would like to support Action Oak, please contact the Action Oak Partnership at: