An aerial pathway through the leafy canopy of The Forestry Commission’s National Arboretum, Westonbirt, will be officially unveiled by Countryfile presenter, Ellie Harrison, on Tuesday 26th April.
Sponsored by STIHL, the landmark ‘STIHL Treetop Walkway’ whisks visitors into and above the arboretum’s tree-tops for a breathtaking birds-eye-view of the world-renowned tree collection.
The new 13 metre high walkway will transform the woodland experience by promising spectacular views across the arboretum landscape and enabling visitors to discover more about Westonbirt’s 15,000 trees from high above the ground.
The 300 metre route follows a serpentine path through the trees and along the contours of the site, providing step-free access into the arboretum’s Silk Wood for people of all abilities.
Robin Lennie, Managing Director at STIHL, says he is thrilled the walkway is officially open.
“The opening of the STIHL Treetop Walkway is a significant milestone for STIHL. As a leading outdoor power equipment company with such a rich heritage in tree management, it is important for us to support initiatives that help educate people on our wildlife and reinforce the message that chainsaws help foster the growth of our ecosystems. It will be wonderful to see families and school children step foot on the walkway for the first time and get a whole new perspective of the breathtaking arboretum,” says Mr Lennie.
The impressive walkway structure is made from Larch and Douglas Fir and includes more than 20 pairs of timber legs, ranging in size from 2.5 metres up to 14 metres tall.
The walkway experience will also feature seven interactive hotspots to give visitors of all ages the chance to get up-close with nature and learn more about the fascinating world of trees.
Andrew Smith, Director at Westonbirt Arboretum says:
“People have been enjoying the views of Westonbirt from the ground for generations, so the time has come to offer our visitors a new and exciting way to see the arboretum by getting up close and personal with the canopy, just like our tree team! This landmark addition transforms the visitor experience with incredible views which have never been seen before. It also provides a family-friendly and fun way for visitors to engage with the world of trees.
“The STIHL Treetop Walkway is the start of an exciting new chapter in Westonbirt’s history and can be enjoyed as the seasons change throughout the year. We’re incredibly proud of it and would like to thank all the Trusts, Foundations, companies and individual donors who have given their time and money to make this project a reality.”
The new STIHL Treetop Walkway will be open from Wednesday 27th April and access will be included within the admission to the arboretum.
For more information, please visit www.forestry.gov.uk/westonbirt.