Brussels (MTI) – The great sycamore, standing on the banks of the Old Lake in Tata in northwest Hungary, has won second place in this year’s European Tree of the Year contest, the Okotars Foundation said on Thursday.
The winner is an oak tree on a football field in Estonia with 59,836 votes, followed by Tata’s Oriental plane with 53,487 votes and a poplar pollard from Remolinar in Spain with 13,951 votes.
A total of fourteen countries participated in this year’s contest, including England, Belgium, Estonia and Spain for the first time. The great sycamore of Tata already won the Hungarian tree of the year contest, organised by Okotars, last year.
The contest attracted nearly 200,000 votes at www.treeoftheyear.org between February 1 and 28. The award ceremony will be held in the European Parliament on April 22.
The international competition was organised by the European Partnership Association (EPA), which includes Okotars as one of its members.
The purpose of the European Tree of the Year is to highlight the significance of old trees in the natural and cultural heritage. The contest focuses on the tree’s story and its connection to people, the competition’s website shows.
The sycamore of Tata was planted at the entrance of the local fortress 230 years ago. Along with several others, the tree was brought from Versailles on commission by a member of the Esterhazy family.
Hungarian writer and cither player Matyas Pribojszky said he had written the tale of the Sycamore King, after he had regained his writing skills thanks to the tree.