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Rob setting off on year-long tree trek

Oswestry | News | Published:

Rob McBride is off on a year-long crusade with a difference – travelling the length and breadth of Shropshire, hunting for trees.

Rob McBride is off on a year-long crusade with a difference – travelling the length and breadth of Shropshire, hunting for trees.

The Ellesmere man, who admits to being fascinated by trees, is taking part in a project managed by Shropshire Council.

The project will include the Shropshire Ancient Tree Project, which Mr McBride, 53, will be leading. As part of the scheme, Mr McBride will cover the county using various forms of transport to log some of the region's most fascinating species.

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He said: "I am due to spend the next year travelling the length and breadth of Shropshire either in my camper van, by bike, hitch-hiking, walking, or by bus or train, visiting some of the most amazing ancient trees as part of the project.

"Each of these trees has a story to tell, linked in with forgotten tales and folklore from the hidden nooks of Shropshire. I hope to experience great adventures, find brilliant trees and of course meet interesting Salopians."

Mr McBride will be using GPS to help with his search.

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He said: "It is not just any old GPS, it is a GPS that has had all of the recorded Shropshire ancient trees loaded onto it."

The tree hunter says he hopes to eventually ensure the ancient trees are given the proper protection they need.

He has already spend the past three and a half years surveying the trees of Offa's Dyke, which runs along the Shropshire/ Welsh border.

"As I wander the countryside I am inspired, and I get pretty excited at times with the trees that I find," he said.

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"These old trees have never really been 'discovered' before.

"They are a big part of Shropshire's natural and cultural history, forgotten relics of times past that enable me to unravel layers of history as I go."

Mr McBride has two internet sites on which people can track his travels – Flickr and Facebook.

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