Facilities at Tree Cathedral
The Tree Cathedral’s outline is based on Norwich Cathedral and was designed in 1986 by landscape architect Neil Higson. He chose different species of trees to represent the character of the Cathedral's sections: hornbeam and tall-growing lime for the nave, evergreens to represent the central tower and spires, flowering cherry and apple as a focus in the chapels. In springtime colourful bulbs represent the sun shining through stained glass windows onto the ground.
The Tree Cathedral is the only municipal tree cathedral, although sharped by similar medieval ecclesiastical influences.This is a very rare example of a particular type of landscape design on a large and complex scale based on the scale and layout of a medieval British cathedral.
Originally it was to be planted with poplars for rapid growth, but MKDC became more confident on the project which enabled a more complex plan to be worked out relating character of species to the component elements and place structure of the cathedral. There is a mix of evergreen and deciduous, with features such as the tower and the west door being evergreen. The effect varies depending on the time of year, but the scale and monumentality of the grove of trees create a significant impact.
The Tree Cathedral is now available as a natural setting for the scattering or interment of ashes. You can find out more information here.
It’s sometimes possible to use the Tree Cathedral for private ceremonies and celebrations. Contact the events team to discuss this. For the last few years the Cathedral has hosted a pet blessing service. Keep an eye on the what's on pages on this site for details of any future events.
The closest public car park is located on Livingstone Drive, off the V10 - please note that this is a pay and display car park. Charging points for electric cars can also be found here.
There are also public car parks on the opposite side of the V10 Brickhill St serving Willen Lake.
Please note the Peace Pagoda car park and the car parks at south Willen Lake are pay parking; please take care crossing this busy road. These car parks are managed by Napier Parking. Annual permits are available from Napier Parking at £150 for all Willen Lake car parks and £80 for the Peace Pagoda and Tree Cathedral car parks only. You can download permits from Napier here.
Disabled parking concessions at Willen Lake
If you are a blue badge holder and are exempt from paying vehicle tax you are eligible to claim a free annual parking permit for Willen Lake (worth £150). You can download an application form from www.napierparking.co.uk. Together with your completed application form you will need to provide a copy of your blue badge and of your nil value tax disc. Please note that an administration charge of £10 will apply.
For more information please telephone Napier Parking Ltd on 01730 828103 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are no public toilets at Newlands. The closest facilities are at South Willen Lake, adjacent to the cafeteria and children’s playground.
There is a path to the Tree Cathedral from the Livingstone Drive car park. Other access to the Tree Cathedral is via unmade tracks, which may be difficult in bad weather.
Make a day of it
Newlands lies due east of Campbell Park which can be reached via a leisure route that crossed the canal. Directly opposite the Tree Cathedral is Willen Lake, which is in turn part of the Ouzel Valley Park, offering a wide range of options for extending your outing.