Did you know that a conker was planted in St Albans that was sourced from the French battlefield at Verdun and that this year is the 100th anniversary of the battle?
This horse chestnut was grown from a conker collected from a horse chestnut tree in Verdun, France; the only tree to survive the tragic battle which took place there in 1916 and obliterated the rest of the landscape. The battle of Verdun was the longest and one of the bloodiest battles of the First World War, with a quarter of a million French and German troops loosing their lives, and over a million wounded, earning it the nickname of “the mincing machine of Verdun”. This tree, the offspring of a rare survivor amongst an unprecedented level of destruction, serves as a memorial to all those who lost their lives. The tree can be seen at the rear of the Village Arcade down Waxhouse Gate.