Tony Andrews is a director of Denholme-based Yorkshire Christmas Trees, which supplies trees across the UK and as far afield as the Gulf States.
Q What type of tree is the most popular?A The Nordman fir because it does not drop needles. It has a beautiful smell when in a warm room and is very soft to touch. They are long-lasting and would be fine until Easter. It is known as the Rolls Royce’ of Christmas trees.
Q What is the hardest part of your job? A Being a Christmas product, there is a short window into which everything has to be fitted. We grow thousands of trees and during the festive period they have to be cut and netted, and some have to be delivered to customers. It is very hectic.
Q Do you grow your own trees? A Yes, our trees are grown here at Denholme, and on sites across northern England. We have an on-going scheme of planting which ensures sustainability. Trees take between seven and eight years to grow to the required height so we are replanting all the time. In the past, trees tended to be imported to Britain from Denmark, but that does not happen now. This is a greener way of operating.
Q Where do your Christmas trees end up? A A lot are bought by local people, who come up here every year. We also have people who come from further away, and we also supply Dubai. We started doing that seven years ago, with 150 trees, and now we send around 1,000.
Q What can people do with their trees after Christmas? A They can be brought back here to be mulched, and the mulch – which is placed on the ground to improve the soil – is then sold back to the public to be re-used, so there is no waste. We encourage people to return trees to us.