Tears for the Weeping Willow

The vista down the park from the croquet lawn is one of the defining views at Dillington. The long view formed by carefully planted trees adds wonderfully to that sense of getting away from the hurly-burly and into something natural and real.  Of course, this is all an illusion and the park is, in reality, a carefully contrived construction.  There is nothing natural really just a fabricated appearance of nature in its most benign state.   Key to the the theatre of the landscape are the trees and so, with a metaphorical tear in my eye, I have to report a great loss.  The magnificent weeping willow, at the end of the bank on your right as you look down the garden into the park, suddening gave up its crown which crashed down into the rest of the tree.  The moment was 7.30am last Thursday morning and the crack was so loud a resident was convinced somebody had let off a powerful gun. The sheep in the park were completely spooked by the retort and spent a good ten minutes or more running about as if their lives depended on it.  The sheep survived the ordeal but sadly the tree didn’t.  So much of the tree was damaged that the only kind thing was to take it down completely.  Naturally, we counted the rings and ascertained that it was planted some 47 years ago.  This makes it a youngster among the trees at Dillington but this wonderful willow was one of the most conspicuous and graceful.  It will be missed and remembered.


About Dillington Blog

My name is Wayne Bennett and I am the Director of Dillington House in Somerset. Dillington House is Somerset's residential centre for adult education as well as being one of south west England's premier locations for conferences and meetings. Dillington has an incredible reputation not just in Somerset but across the country. It has been in operation since 1950 and a focus of many cultural and artistic events across the decades. The place is an oasis for learning, thinking and debating ideas. In a world in which we seem to be so atomised the opportunity for coming together as human beings in a safe and inspirational setting has enormous value to individuals as well as communities. My job is enormously rewarding because of the creative possibilities and the challenges of making the place work without financial subsidy. I hope you will enjoy reading this blog and following the work of an extraordinary institution committed to excellence in everything it does.
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3 Responses to Tears for the Weeping Willow

  1. Henry says:

    Wayne. Plant another one.

    • Dear Henry,
      Certainly, we will plant another with a smile for the future. Off to the Pebblebeds at the weekend for the final year. Pebble platforms are bronze age (confirmed by c14) and unique in British prehistory.

  2. Laura Scotney says:

    Wayne, Very sorry to hear about the tree – it certainly was a part of the vista and will be missed. Glad you are going to plant another tho’ and looking forward to seeing it grow!

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