Fund4Trees trustee Gabriel Hemery receives a cutting from the Ankerwycke Yew from Ray Hawes of The National Trust

Fund4Trees Charter Ride

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Charter for Trees, Woods and People
Charter for Trees, Woods and People

The Charter for Trees, Woods and People will be launched on 6th November, and Fund4Trees is undertaking a special cycling Charter Ride to help celebrate this significant moment.

The Charter Ride


A group of nine riders will be undertaking a 170-mile cycle Charter Ride from London to promote the Tree Charter, arriving in Lincoln to coincide with its launch at Lincoln Castle.

The riders are:

  • Fund4Trees trustees: Gabriel Hemery, Martin Gammie, Mick Boddy, Russell Ball, and Tracy Clarke
  • Woodland Trust representatives: Christine Reid, and Ruth Hyde
  • Arboricultural Association representative: Simon Cox
  • Woodsman and cycling journalist: Rob Penn


The group will set off from the Ankerwycke Yew at Runnymede, under whose boughs the Magna Carta was signed in 1215. Two years later, in 1217, the Charter of the Forest was issued as a complimentary charter to the Magna Carta, granting rights for Free Men to access Royal Forests – read more.

A rare cutting from the yew will be carried along the Charter Ride route, before being planted at Lincoln. The Ankerwycke Yew is a male tree so has no seedlings of its own, and instead can only be propagated by taking cuttings. The young yew tree was propagated and raised by The National Trust, and Head of Forestry Ray Hawes handed over the tree to Fund4Trees trustee Gabriel Hemery earlier this week (photo).

Fund4Trees trustee Gabriel Hemery receives a cutting from the Ankerwycke Yew from Ray Hawes of The National Trust
Fund4Trees trustee Gabriel Hemery receives the propagated cutting from the Ankerwycke Yew from Ray Hawes of The National Trust

Our destination is Lincoln Castle, where one of the only two remaining copies of the original 1217 Charter of the Forest is kept in its vaults.

  • Friday 3rd November: Runnymede to Milton Keynes
  • Saturday 4th November: Milton Keynes to Melton Mowbray
  • Sunday 5th November: Melton Mowbray to Lincoln City
  • Monday 6th November: arrive Lincoln Castle

Planting trees with communities

Along the route the riders will be visiting schools and local communities to talk about the importance of trees, and of course to plant trees.

  • Our first stop, early on Friday morning, will be Churchmead School in Datchet, Berkshire, just a stone’s throw from Runnymede and its famous yew.
  • On Saturday we will visit a local Charter Branch at Somerby in Leicestershire.
  • Sunday we will be at Belton House in Lincolnshire, a National Trust property, to plant a tree with their staff.
  • On Monday 6th, we will visit secondary school Priory Pembroke Academy in Lincoln.
  • Finally, we will present the Ankerwycke Yew cutting to Tree Charter dignitaries at Lincoln Castle where it will be later planted.

Fund4Trees_CharterRideWatch our progress

  • Each day we will record our progress using a GPS tracker. You will be able to view progress on the Strava Fund4Trees group page
  • Look out for our Charter peloton on the road – we should be visible in our bright new cycling colours!
  • We’ll post a daily update and video blog – check our website each evening
  • Follow us on twitter:  @fund4trees

With thanks

Fund4Trees trustees are very grateful to the following for their core support of the 2017 Charter Ride:

Arboricultural Association
Arboricultural Association
Dobson UK
Green Blue Urban
Tree Surveys
Woodland Trust


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