Sue Robb of 4Children talks to Julie Laughton and Alison Britton from the Department for Education about the role of childminders in delivering the 30 hours free entitlement.
Stockeld Park is Yorkshire’s largest and perhaps most renowned Christmas Tree grower. Christmas Trees have been grown on the estate for over 100 years and today there are more than half a million trees in the ground.
Since the estate’s evolution into a major growing operation in 1986, Stockeld Park has provided hundreds of thousands of Christmas Trees to customers across Yorkshire and beyond, including local authorities, hotels, churches, garden centres and schools.
The overwhelming majority of trees grown at Stockeld Park are Nordmann Firs, the most popular Christmas Tree variety in the United Kingdom. The Nordmann is favoured for its straight central trunk and beautiful symmetry. The needles, which are dark green on top and silver-grey underneath, stay on the branches for up to 20 years, longer than any other fir tree. This helps to create a dense canopy from the tip of the tree down to the ground, and is what makes the Nordmann such an outstanding non-needle drop Christmas Tree.
Stockeld Park also retains a smaller number of Norway Spruce trees. The majority of these are 10 feet and above in size, making them especially suitable for outdoor use, for instance in public squares and other prominent locations. The traditional Victorian Christmas Tree, the Norway Spruce is favoured for its classical shape and beautiful scent. The widespread use of the Norway Spruce as a Christmas Tree dates back to 1841 when Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria, introduced the custom of decorating a spruce tree with lights.
At Stockeld Park, attention to detail and the pursuit of the highest standards of excellence are paramount. Throughout the year, every single tree on the plantation is individually cultivated by hand, ensuring the development of the very highest quality trees across all ranges. This is only made possible by the dedication and experience of our team, who have refined our growing techniques over several decades.
As Yorkshire’s biggest grower, Stockeld Park also maintains the capacity to combine high quality with exceptional prices. Unlike with many other Christmas Tree wholesalers, there is no middleman at Stockeld Park, meaning customers can be guaranteed the most competitive rates across all tree ranges. And because every tree is freshly cut from the estate plantations, there is no waiting round in cold storage as with some other growers.
Stockeld Park is a registered member of the British Christmas Tree Growers Association.