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Exclusive photography events during Westonbirt's illuminated trail

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Two specialist photography events will be held during this year’s Enchanted Christmas illuminated trail at Westonbirt, the National Arboretum.

The ‘Westonbirt, Capturing the Light’ evenings are organised in partnership with photography magazines PhotoPlus and Digital Camera, and photography website PhotoRadar; produced by Bath-based Future Publishing.

The events will take place on Thursday 9 December and Thursday 16 December, from 4.30 - 9pm, and will allow exclusive access for keen photographers to the illuminated trail outside of normal public days of admission.

The Enchanted Christmas at Westonbirt Arboretum, which is managed by the Forestry Commission, is a favourite with photographers looking to capture the beauty of Westonbirt’s trees, spectacularly highlighted by the illuminated trail.

Visitors to ‘Westonbirt, Capturing the Light’ will be skilfully guided through top techniques for photographing the illuminated trees.

A guide produced especially for the event will contain advice on technique, composition and editing from photography experts, the magazines’ editors and leading camera equipment manufacturers, including the London Camera Exchange.

BBC Lonely Planet photographer, David Noton, will also give two talks each evening about his experiences as one of the most eminent landscape photographers in Britain.

The event is open to visitors aged 14 years and over. Advance ticket prices are £18 and £20 for tickets purchased at the event. Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum and subscribers to PhotoPlus and Digital Camera magazines can purchase tickets at £15.

Visit for more information and to book tickets online.


1. Westonbirt, The National Arboretum is part of the Forestry Commission estate and is renowned worldwide for its tree and shrub collection. Home to the National Japanese Maple (Acer) collection, the National Arboretum covers 243 hectares (600 acres) and contains 16,000 specimens. Visitor numbers are 350,000 a year, with a membership of 23,000. Westonbirt Arboretum was established in the 1850s by wealthy landowner Robert Holford, and later developed by his son George Holford.  Unlike many arboreta, Westonbirt is laid out according to aesthetic appeal rather than scientific or geographical criteria.

2. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Further information can be found at

3. Westonbirt, The National Arboretum is part of the Westonbirt Heritage Partnership, which consists of the Forestry Commission, Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum, Westonbirt School and the Holfords of Westonbirt Trust. The Partnership plans to reconnect the historic Westonbirt estate, conserve its unique heritage and inspire future visitors through the Westonbirt Project, supported by The Heritage Lottery Fund.

4. The Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum was formed in 1985. The charity’s objects are to support the National Arboretum in promoting public understanding of the crucial role of trees to the environment and society. It is funded by membership receipts from 25,000 members, other fundraising, and the use of the Great Oak Hall for events and activities.  


Katrina Podlewska, Communications Manager, Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, on 01666 881 207 or email: