Lightning Oak, Forest of Dean

Symbol of endurance and courage – and strapping virtues such as strength, honour and resistance – the mighty oak is one of England’s most powerful natural emblems, and the undisputed monarch of the greenwood. Towering of trunk and twisted of twig, the oak stands stoically on many an English village green, watching silently as the storms and seasons and the currents of time come and go, living for as long as 1,000 years.

Unlike its straight-laced cousins overseas, the eccentric English oak grows with endless tangles and twists, and collects gnarls and knuckles along its branches with each year that passes. While weathering life’s storms, folk through the ages have sought strength under the oak’s canopy of rustling boughs, in the soothing knowledge that they are but a dot in the passing of its lifetime.

English Oak (Quercus robur) bark – containing a collection of naturally active ingredients, including tannins – has been employed traditionally for its remarkable antiseptic and skin-toning properties.

Britain in a Bottle Noble Isle sources extract of Oak from one of the most famous forests in England, The Forest of Dean, located in Gloucestershire. Originally, dating back to 1066, the Forest of Dean was reserved for royal hunting and then during King Charles Ist reign in 1631, 3,000 acres were deforested causing huge riots. Moving forward centuries later, in 1919, the Forestry Commission was founded to restore the nation’s woods and forests following the First World War and the passing of the forestry act. Thanks to the commitment of the Forestry Commission the Forest of Dean now boasts of 11,000 hectares of mixed woodland and is now the second largest crown forest in England. The forest is not only home to species of oak and conifer but also foxgloves, wild flowers, a multitude of bird species and even wild boar and three species of deer.

Due to the fluctuations in temperature and soil composition and increase in pests and disease caused by climate change, there are huge felled areas in the Forest of Dean. Instead of conifers and broad leaves being planted, the Forestry Commission are having to plant trees that will survive in warmer climates. The sustainable forestry that the commission undertake in the Forest of Dean, limits the spread of diseases and helps limit the level of deforestation in places of conservation such as the Amazon rainforest.

The oak for our fragrance is sourced from branches that fall to the ground naturally.

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