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The story behind tree no. 188

akin project tree planting at Elie Holiday Park

This is tree number 188. 

It’s one of two hundred oak trees that have been gifted to individuals and organisations across Fife and has recently been planted at Elie Holiday Park as part of akin - a long term, large scale, participatory and public artwork project that started in 2013.

Pictured left to right above: Darren Noble, Gardens Manager (Abbeyford Leisure), Colin Andrew (Artist and Creator of akin) and Bryan Simpson, Elie Holiday Park General Manager (Abbeyford Leisure).

The man behind the initiative is Colin Andrews, a Fife-based artist originally from Northern Ireland.

In 2013, Colin gathered scores of acorns from across Fife and lovingly nurtured the saplings with the vision to re-plant them across the region. The final batch of trees, now 10 years old, are being carefully planted and businesses such as Abbeyford Leisure, will undertake the stewardship of their adopted trees.

Trees have already been planted in well known locations including: Loch Ore Meadows, Cambo Estate, Kellie Castle and Dunnikier Park to name but a few.

Colin’s vision is to develop a ‘future forest’ with the intention of engaging the residents and communities of Fife to create a collective symbol of empowerment, commitment, and sustainability through individual acts of nurture, stewardship, and reflection.

akin oak tree_credit Colin Andrew
Colin planted the first acorns in 2013

Picture credit: Colin Andrews

Artist, Colin said: 

akin is intended as a symbol of hope and commitment to the future. The oak family has graced our planet for a remarkable 65 million years and is one of earth’s most ancient species. It is clearly a robust and resilient species and individual oaks can live for over 1000 years. Oaks once formed a third of all tree cover in Britain and is the most iconic of Britain’s native trees - an enduring symbol of longevity, strength and dignity and firmly established as an important part of our natural and cultural heritage. They are also potent symbols of biodiversity and symbiotic relations, with a single oak able to support up to 2300 other species.”

Acorns gathered from Fife
Acorns gathered from across Fife in 2013

Abbeyford Leisure’s Gardens Manager, Darren Noble said:

We’re delighted to be part of such an inspiring environmental project and one that unites communities and businesses across the Kingdom in this unique and special way. Coastal climates and soils can be challenging, but I’m confident that the carefully chosen location for our tree will mean that it will flourish for generations to come.”

Elie Holiday Park, General Manager, Bryan Simpson said:

The akin initiative not only complements the recent tree planting project at St Andrews Holiday Park, but also aligns with our environmental responsibilities and values.

The word, akin, which gives its name to the project, is an old Scots word meaning, 'consisting of oaks'. In English, the word has come to mean, related, similar, compatible, or of the same family. We are connected. We are a kin.

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Free Papa Johns tasters at St Andrews Holiday Park
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