RESIDENTS in Wiltshire are being urged to vote for a centuries-old oak that has been shortlisted for the Tree of the Year Award.

The Library holm Oak in Westbury has a massive girth of 7.10 metres and its exact age is unknown but could be between 400 and 800 years old.

The striking, huge holm oak behind Westbury's library is something to behold according to William Hudson who nominated it for the awards run by the Woodland Trust.

It is one of 13 trees shortlisted for this year’s award, competing against trees from Addlestone, Belfast, Exeter, Grantham, Leamington Spa, Lichfield, London, Manchester, Perth, Plymouth, Sheffield, Wrexham.

The other shortlisted trees include an oak in Exeter that survived a wartime bomb, the tree that shaded Queen Elizabeth I on summer picnics and one of the UK’s most famous elms in Sheffield.

The Library holm oak in Westbury was chosen from the public nominations and watches over the town library from the public Soisy Gardens. It is nestled in the town's hub and is a popular spot for community events.

The oak’s history is unknown, but it pre-dates the 18th century building, which was originally Westbury House, once home to prominent mill owner and local MP, Abraham Laverton.

This year’s contest shines a spotlight on ancient trees in urban locations, with every shortlisted specimen able to be visited free of charge by the public.

The national contest celebrates urban trees in our neighbourhoods, from city parks and busy town centres to residential streets.

Naomi Tilley, lead campaigner at the Woodland Trust, said: “Ancient trees in towns and cities are vital for the health of nature, people and planet.

“They give thousands of urban wildlife species essential life support, boost the UK’s biodiversity and bring countless health and wellbeing benefits to communities."

The Woodland Trust is campaigning for extra protection for ancient trees, which are only protected under legislation such as a tree protection order.

Most ancient trees are not on any register, the charity has previously found.

Now is your chance to vote for the tree and help the Wiltshire entry to be crowned the Tree of the Year 2023 champion. The winner will represent the UK in the European Tree of the Year competition.

Voting is open until Sunday, October 15 and this year's winner will be announced on Thursday, October 19.

To vote for the Library holm oak, visit