Painshill Park Trust to plant a new Oak tree to celebrate the coronation of King Charles III

On Saturday 6 May 2023, the trustees, staff and volunteers of Painshill Park Trust will join the nation in celebrating the coronation of King Charles III.

As The Prince of Wales, His Majesty King Charles was the Royal Patron of Painshill Park Trust. Preserving the nation’s heritage and protecting green spaces are causes close to King Charles’ heart and he visited Painshill a number of times to show his support.

King Charles, who at the time was Prince of Wales, made his first visit to Painshill in 1987. The Trust was only a few years old and the restoration process in its very early days. His Majesty learnt about the new charity, met with staff and volunteers and took his first tour of the grounds.

The Prince of Wales with Janie Burford, the first Director of the Trust, in 1987

The Prince of Wales inspecting archaeology work around the Ruined Abbey, in 1987

On this first visit His Majesty opened the newly rebuilt Chinese Bridge.

The Prince of Wales opening the Chinese Bridge

It has recently come to the attention of the Painshill Park Trust that, after nearly 40 years of use, the wooden bridge is in a poor state of repair. The structure was recently closed to the public as a safety precaution, highlighting the fragility of the landscape and the work needed to protect and preserve it. Painshill Park Trust, now in its 5th decade, has needed to restore some features for the second time. The Woollett Bridge was recently replaced in steel, rather than wood, to ensure a longer lifetime as the Trust looks to preserve Painshill for the future.

It is poignant that, as His Majesty becomes King, the feature he opened in 1987 may need to be restored again in the very near future.

His Royal Highness returned for later visits and in 1995 he opened the rebuilt Turkish Tent.

The Prince of Wales talks to school children on his 1995 visit

The Prince of Wales meeting David Taylor and Michael Singleton with his Private Secretary, Sir Stephen Lamport, who is the current Chairman of the Painshill Park Trust

The Prince of Wales with Karen Bridgeman and Kath Clark in 2011

In 2011 His Royal Highness inspected the progress of the restoration of the Crystal Grotto. A grant from The National Lottery Heritage Fund allowed the Trust to reconstruct this incredible landscape feature. The work involved rebuilding the brick walls, replacing the wooden frames for the stalactites and applying around 100,000 crystals into lime mortar by hand.

The Prince of Wales visits to see the Crystal Grotto in 2011

Throughout his life, King Charles has championed woodlands and the ancient trees of England. He was Patron of the Queen’s Green Canopy in 2022, which involved 70 ancient trees being dedicated to the Queen in celebration of her 70 years on the throne. The Great Cedar at Painshill was one of those trees. Thought to be the largest multi-stemmed cedar in Europe, the tree is over 250 years old and stands at 118 feet high.

To commemorate the Queen’s 70 years on the throne, Painshill Park Trust planted a new cedar in May 2022.

This year the Trust plant an oak to mark to the new King’s Coronation and to celebrate his passion for the natural world.