This beautiful carved oak tree sculpture at Blackthorpe Barn is inspired by the extraordinary wealth of life forms living both above and below ground level in woodlands and forests all over the world.

Science is identifying incredible connections between these life forms, often enabled by mycorrhizal fungal threads which link together all parts of a woodland community. The longer the ground remains undisturbed, the more extensive these systems become, linking trees and other plant life together across the forest and enabling them to support each other.

The trees are able to communicate with each other and are able to help each other, if there are any that are suffering from some problem such as lack of water, by sharing their water between them. We are only now discovering how a wood or forest is really one huge organism which, if undisturbed, can last for thousands of years; a precious remnant of bygone days that is hugely relevant now and even more so for all our futures.

The tree used to tell this story is an oak, which was itself about four hundred years old. It grew here on the Rougham Estate and sadly had to be felled for safety reasons. At its base, where it stood in the park surrounding Rougham Hall, the then Estate owner Sir George William Agnew buried his dog ‘Tummel’ and erected a gravestone in his memory.

This lovely oak tree has now been repurposed to tell the wonderful story of our ancient woodlands.


It has been cut down its entire length to open it up like a book. Like a book too, it is telling us a story, the wonderful story of life below the ground in an ancient wood.

The sculpture was carved by members of the Heaven Sculpture Yard community. The Rougham Estate would like to thank them for the passion and dedication with which they undertook this complex and challenging task. 

Forest Floor is a sculpture commissioned by Rougham Estate in 2021 to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of Arts and Crafts events at Blackthorpe Barn.

It was opened on 6 November 2021.

On the Rougham Estate we have over 110 acres of ancient and semi-natural woodland, which we proudly treasure and look after to the best of our ability.

You can visit this beautiful installation at Blackthorpe Barn; it is situated in the meadow on the other side of the car park from the Barn. You are welcome to wander in between the “pages”.