Royal Botanic Garden in tree-hugging record bid

Organiser Tom Christian said the record bid was for anyone who appreciated Scotland's scenery. Picture: Scott Louden
Organiser Tom Christian said the record bid was for anyone who appreciated Scotland's scenery. Picture: Scott Louden
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THE Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is in the final stages of organising a world record attempt to get the largest number of people hugging a tree at any one time.

The attempt, which will take place at 11 sites across Scotland, including the Botanics, will hopefully see 1000 volunteers nestle up to a trunk.

A spokesman for the Botanics said: “We really need local people of all ages to come along and get involved.”

Tom Christian, project officer for organiser Scotland’s Tree Trail, said it was a call to action for anyone who ­appreciated Scotland’s ­beautiful scenery.

He said: “This record attempt is a perfect opportunity to celebrate the Year of Natural Scotland, mark National Tree Week and to have a bit of fun in the process. Eleven of the 16 sites in Scotland’s Tree Trail are ­taking part and we only need 1,000 people to help us take the record from our American counterparts.

“We believe that Scotland is a nation of tree lovers – let’s help prove that we are also a nation of tree huggers.”

The current world record was set by Forestry Commission England in September 2011.

They brought together 702 people for a mass woody ­love-in at the Delamare Forest, Cheshire.

In summer, 950 people in leafy Portland, in Oregon, the USA, claim to have broken their efforts. But that is still pending official approval from Guinness.

Max Coleman, from the Botanics, hopes a thousand will seal a world record for a good number of years.

He said: “We are really excited to be getting involved with this record attempt and we really need local people of all ages to come along and get involved. It’s free to participate, a great opportunity to be part of the launch of Scotland’s Tree Trail and, you never know, we may even set a World Record in the process.”

Syd House, Forestry Commission Scotland, said it was an opportunity for people to make history.

He said: “Who wouldn’t want to hug a tree and set a new World Record? We really want as many people to get involved as possible.”

The World’s Largest Tree Hug will take place on Sunday. Visit www.TreeTrailScotland.com for more information.