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The Company of Trees

Friday 8 April 2016

1 Hour


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Ticket price

Historian and bestselling writer Thomas Pakenham shares his love of trees and the story of his efforts to establish a large arboretum at his family estate in Tullynally, Ireland.

Pakenham talks of his plantings at Tullynally, his visits to other parks and plantations and of his seed-hunting trips abroad. He recounts his travels to the Tibetan border to satisfy his passion for the magnolia and his trips to Eastern Patagonia to see the remaining giant monkey puzzle trees, and tells how his own Chinese garden was planted entirely with seeds from south-west China. The stories encompass fears about climate change and disease and hope for the future.

Pakenham is author of several critically acclaimed books including The Year of Liberty, The Boer War and The Scramble for Africa. He is also author and photographer of the bestselling Meetings with Remarkable Trees, Remarkable Trees of the World and In Search of Remarkable Trees: On Safari in Southern Africa. Pakenham is the son of Labour minister and social reformer Frank Longford and Elizabeth Longford. Among his siblings are writer Lady Antonia Fraser, who was married to Harold Pinter, and novelist Lady Rachel Billington, who also talks at the festival about her new novel Glory: A Story of Gallipoli.

This event is part of the festival’s leadership programme sponsored by HSBC.