Sometime during 1972-73 I noticed that a large elm tree growing on the slope between the school building and the football pitch on the south side was looking half dead.
An owl used this tree as a perch on a regular basis.
As some of the branches were dead and could easily have broken off and fallen on someone, I mentioned my concerns to the headmaster. In due course, an inspector
arrived and examined the tree. It was found to have Dutch Elm Disease. All the other elms were also found to be infected. There were about a dozen of them around the pond and a further dozen bordering the area at the top of the front drive from the farm gate to just before the Big House.
All had to be felled.
It was a mammoth task removing all these trees and the workmen were around for several weeks. We watched this procedure and it was a sad time to see such lovely trees going.
There are many beautiful trees at Town Thorns, but those of us who were there at the time missed these giants.
Today, there is no evidence that elm trees ever grew in the grounds.