A 20 FOOT Christmas tree from York has arrived in Downing Street.

As previously reported by The Press, York based Champion Christmas tree grower Oliver Combe chose the tree that will stand outside 10, Downing Street during the festive period, the first time a tree from the North of England will be seen in one of the most iconic settings in Britain.

Oliver, who runs York Christmas Trees in Wiggington with wife Kirstie, felled the Nordmann fir earlier this week in preparation for its journey to London.

Oliver earned the right to supply the tree by winning the title of Champion Christmas Grower of the Year in an annual competition run by the British Christmas Tree Growers Association (BCTGA) with a tree chosen by his 12-year-old son, Joe, who was present to watch the tree being felled.

Joe said: “It is really exciting that a tree that has been growing on our farm for over 20 years will be outside the Prime Minister’s house. I hope I get a day off school to see the tree in Downing Street.”

Oliver said: “We are a small family run Christmas tree business based on a farm just outside York and to be given the chance to provide the tree for Downing Street is incredibly exciting and a great reward for all the hard work that our team puts in throughout the year.”

The Christmas tree was dressed by Charlotte Gilbert of Woods Farm Christmas Trees, Solihull and Jane Ingram of The Tree Barn, Watlington, Oxfordshire.

Heather Parry, Managing Agent for BCTGA said: “Today is a symbolic moment which shows the start of a Christmas which we have all been so focussed on. It was a significant boost that the Government supported our members, recognising that Christmas trees are essential at this time of year and that the selling season is short; whilst understanding consumers are particularly keen to get their decorations up this year.”

The annual British Christmas Tree Growers Association competition has been run since 1999 and York Christmas Trees is the first winner from the north of England.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “Huge congratulations to all this year’s competition winners. We’re delighted that York Christmas Trees has provided the Downing Street tree this year which I hope will be enjoyed by many.

“These beautiful trees and wreaths are the first step to bringing us some festive cheer in what has ultimately been a very challenging year for us all.”

The Runner Up Christmas Tree Grower of the Year was Jon Baker of Little Down Christmas Tree Farm, East Sussex who has provided Christmas trees for inside Downing Street.

Best Short Film Winner was Sholach Trees Ltd, Perthshire, Scotland and they have provided a Christmas tree for The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).

The British Christmas Tree Growers Association, (BCTGA) has 320 members nationally who sell approximately 8 to 10 million trees a year.

The BCTGA, which was formed 30 years ago, is managed by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society.