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Last Updated: Friday, 1 July, 2005, 10:53 GMT 11:53 UK
Wales home to UK's tallest tree
Lake Vyrnwy
Lake Vyrnwy was created in 1888 with the completion of a dam
A fir which towers over Lake Vyrnwy has been named the tallest tree in Wales and the joint tallest tree in Britain.

The Douglas Fir in the Powys nature reserve was measured at 62.5m (205ft) - taller than a 20-storey building.

It shares the record with two other Douglases in Scotland, one in Argyll and one near Inverness.

The champion Welsh tree is believed to be between 105 and 115 years old, and dwarfs its neighbouring Douglas Firs which measure a mere 32m (105ft).

The Lake Vyrnwy tree was measured by tree surgeon Simon Cope, who stretched a length of rope up to the top as he climbed its branches.

The height was then calculated back on the ground and confirmed by the Tree Register of the British Isles.

A tree surgeon using ropes to scale the tree
Tree surgeon Simon Cope climbed all 62.5m to measure it

Registrar David Alderman said: "All three are great trees!

"Within 10 years, however, we are going to see many more pushing 63m, particularly Douglas Fir and Grand Fir tree planted in the 1930s by the Forestry Commission.

"These plantation tree in deep valleys are providing shelter for each other, allowing them all to grow much taller, so in the future we will see less record-breaking individual trees with great character, like the one visible at Lake Vyrnwy."

Plans are now afoot to create an all-access trail to the tree, which stands in a nature reserve managed by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.

The new attraction will be built using European funding and grants from Severn Trent Water - owners of the Lake Vyrnwy estate - and the Forestry Commission Wales.

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