In March 2011, this magnificent tree was threatened with felling
Windsor residents successfully saved it!
In 2006 a postcard of the above Edwardian view was lost in the post on its way to us so we hope to find another somewhere! (Not found one yet - March 2011!). In the meantime we include above the only remaining scan of the view believed to be originally photographed and published by T E Cochrane, a local commercial photographer and postcard publisher, who lived just around the corner at 27 Queens Road, Windsor. The family also lived at one time in St Leonards Avenue. The date of the view is around 1908-1910.
The cedar tree in St Leonards Road pre-dates St Leonards Road by a long way. The following history was prepared by G Percy Harris in 1960.
Mr Harris also writes of his family's other connections with Windsor including his great great grandfather, the Rev. Alexander Redford, the first minister of the Congregational Church in William Street (demolished in the 1970s). His co-pastor was Mr Harris's maternal grandfather, Dr John Stoughton, and his son Wilberforce founded the book publishers, Hodder and Stoughton.
Mr Harris vividly remembers back in the 1890s the Windsor residents of those days, the Oxleys, Harpers, Shipleys, Caleys, Durants and others. One of the lay clerks at St George's Chapel, Thomas Dyson, taught Mr Harris and the boys of Clewer House School to sing. It is interesting how our magnificent old tree has links with very many of the well-known names of Victorian Windsor life.
The question remains 'How old is the
tree?' It seems unlikely that it was a sapling in 1839 when the
school moved in. It is far more likely to have been planted some
time after Clewer House was built, the date of which remains
unknown but could have been back in the 1780s perhaps.
We will continue to look for more information about the tree's earlier days as it grew into the famous and much-loved landmark it is today. Sadly in March 2011 the tree has been threatened with felling. Residents were up in arms as no consultations had taken place and the feeling was that the borough officers were rushing the decision to for purely cash reasons even though the tree was in excellent condition and still comparatively young. Read More on Our Forum
In our article about the film Carry on Cabby, (1963) we include these images of the same area of St Leonards Road, from both sides of the cedar tree.
Queens Road has been renamed Rigby Road for the purposes of the film. the cedar tree is to the left, with The Trooper Public House beyond at no.97.
Martin's Garage dating from 1914, at nos. 103-105, is to the right of centre and the Ex-Servicemen's Club to the right at no. 107.
The same area from the other side, at the junction of St Mark's Road. The cedar tree is to the right, with Martin's Garage to the left and the Ex-Servicemen's Club to the right of centre and a café further to the right.