top of page

Honouring The Whiteleaved Oak

A project to grow rare whiteleaved oaks in memory of the great sacred Oak tree that burned down. The sacred oak grew near Whiteleaved Oak hamlet in the county of Herefordshire, lying in a valley at the southern end of the Malvern Hills between Raggedstone Hill and Chase End Hill where the counties of Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire meet.

"The Great Oak pictured below is the Sessile oak that burned to the ground last summer. This is the Oak people want to replace - the one everybody revered.

Many believe that this is the Whiteleaved Oak that the valley is named after. This is wrong - the valley is named after a legendary tree that was cut down in Victorian times.

Honouring The Whiteleaved Oak
The Sacred Oak at Whiteleaved Oak Hamlet

This legendary tree did have some cuttings that grew in the village but they died eventually - probably because the graft was infected or the root stock was unsuitable. I have researched this tree for many years including speaking to locals. In fact, the Malverns did have a few of these rare trees long ago. So, it came as a great surprise to find a Victorian Whiteleaved Oak in the grounds of Biddulph Grange (now owned by the National Trust) planted by James Bateman (see my The Power of Centre book) an horticulturalist and mystic of some renown at the time.

Author Gary Biltcliffe Honouring The Whiteleaved Oak at Biddulph Grange
Gary Biltcliffe at Biddulph Grange Garden with a rare whiteleaved oak

Found in very few places a couple more of these rare trees can also be seen in Childwell Park Liverpool and Westonbirt Arboretum near Cirencester.

My plan for honouring the Whiteleaved Oak then is to re-introduce the White Leaved or Variegated oak Quercus Robur ‘Albomarmarata to the valley. Perhaps not in the same spot as the Great Oak but a number of them discretely in the valley. If we planted one of these rare trees where the other one stood, it would probably be a target for theft or pranksters.

Autumnal whiteleaved oak leaves Honouring The Whiteleaved Oak
Whiteleaved oak leaves in Autumn

I will nurture the trees for a couple of years until they are strong enough to plant out in the wild and travelling expenses.

I am not sure exactly when it will happen due to Lockdown but plans are afoot to try and get grafts from several suitable trees I have identified when it is possible. They will be lovingly cared for until they are mature enough to be planted out. “



Plant an Oak Tree

You can plant a tree with Ancient and Sacred Trees. Take a look in our Tree Planting shop. Money raised covers saplings, tree guards, transport and care of the trees by the various volunteer run local communities involved.

About Gary Biltcliffe

Gary Biltcliffe was born in 1960 and brought up in Lancashire. He has dedicated the last 30 years to historical research and investigation of earth mysteries, dowsing ancient sites, uncovering lost knowledge and early folklore. From an early age, his fascination with the esoteric was inspired by numerous real-life paranormal experiences. He has appeared on radio and television and has lectured widely in the UK and North America. Gary has also led International groups around Britain’s sacred sites and written articles for journals and magazines.

Gary Biltcliffe
Gary Biltcliffe

He moved to Dorset in 1993 and his research of the county’s ancient history culminated in his first publication The Spirit of Portland, Revelations of a Sacred Isle in 2009.

He has since gone on to write The Spine of Albion, 15 years in the making and The Power of Centre. All of which have received glowing reviews from people such as The Network of Ley Hunters, Northern Earth, Caduceus Magazine and Grahame Gardner President of the British Society of Dowers and many other well respected others in the earth mysteries community and beyond.

Why Ancient and Sacred Trees is Promoting this Project.

Respected authors Gary and his wife Caroline Hoare are dedicated to helping heal the earth and spend all their spare time in this pursuit. The artist Franklin LaVoie, tree lover and member of OBOD ( Order of Bards, Ovates & Druids), heard what Gary was doing and wanted to raise funds and so they contacted Ancient and Sacred Trees to see if the communitree could help.

This grass-roots volunteer run project in memory of both the sacred Oak that burned down and the rare whiteleaved Oak the original tree. It celebrates our ancient and sacred connections we have with Oaks and is a perfect example of what is at the heart the vision and mission of Ancient and Sacred Trees - a love for trees. AST is proud to promote Garys' mission to help this very rare tree.

As Gary says

"To replant this tree - the original variety Quercusrobur ‘Albomarmarata' - at a mystical centre would be a great deed for the sacred landscape of England. "

How Rare is the Whiteleaved Oak?

So just how rare is the whiteleaved oak? The Tree Register of Britain and Ireland (TROBI) has on its' list just 69 of these beautiful trees on 54 sites. To find out more about the tree and the original that grew in the hamlet see The Sacred Whiteleaved Oak Part 1 'The Sacred Whiteleaved Oak - Part 2'

How Can You Plant an Oak Tree with Ancient and Sacred Trees?

There are lots of ways you can plant oak trees with Ancient and Sacred Trees with personalised ecards, certificates, organic tee shirts and more, there are lots of ways you can help. Visit our shop!

The Tree - A Beautifully Written Book About the Life of An Oak Tree.

AST is also delighted to present The Tree, a fabulous, deep, rich, profound book with wonderful reviews about the life of an oak tree. Written from the point of the tree, we guarantee you will look at the world in a deeper more beautiful and connected way. AST members will receive a special discount. Sustainably produced and printed using the latest eco-friendly technology, every book purchased plants an Oak Tree with us.

To join us is free, just sign up to the Forest Heart newsletter.

May our Green and Growing CommuniTree of trees and people be as mighty and strong as an Oak!

PS. To find out more about Gary and his books visit


bottom of page