Get to know our Memory Tree Sculptor - East Cheshire Hospice

Get to know our Memory Tree Sculptor

Making trees is a growing business for talented sculptor Christopher Townsend.

His artwork is proudly on display in the gardens at East Cheshire Hospice and around the country.

The Hospice commissioned him to make a metal Memory Tree as a focal point for families and friends to remember lost loved ones.

It is proving popular, with dozens of supporters buying leaves dedicated to someone special since the tree was unveiled in October.

Another 25 subscribers are now having leaves installed.

Christopher said: “I’ve made all different kinds of sculptures over the years, but the tree appears to be the thing that has really taken off, in particular memorial trees.

Sculptor Christopher Townsend who made the East Cheshire Hospice tree.

“I’ve delivered and installed trees to charities, hospitals, crematoriums, schools and other organisations.

“I’m pleased that the East Cheshire Hospice memorial is attracting so much interest. The design is based on a theme, but it’s a one-off because of its large size.

“It took a long time to make and all the branches were hand-bent cold and then assembled and welded together.

“I’m not a blacksmith, I’m an artist using metal as a medium. The ends of each branch had to be beaten and then drilled. There are between 400 and 500 branch ends and each required physical effort, rather than using a machine or heat treatment.

“No wonder my limbs are almost falling off at the age of 50 as I’ve been doing it for 15 years!”

The Memory Tree is in a discreet peaceful setting and easily accessible without entering the Hospice building.

The Hospice is hoping more supporters will join the scheme. A subscription is £10 a month, or £120 a year.

Hospice Family and Friends Fundraising Co-ordinator Amy Williams with the Memory Tree.

A total of 400 leaves are available with the name of a loved one engraved along with a message if desired. The tree was gifted by AstraZeneca employees.

Christopher, based in Oxfordshire, said: “Whenever I deliver a tree, people usually send me pictures six months, or a year down the line, telling me how many leaves are on it and how it’s been received.

“Sculpting started as a hobby, but it’s now my work and with a family, mortgage and responsibilities it has to be commercially viable.”

* To sign up to the Memory Tree visit

For queries, contact or call 01625 665688. To visit Christopher’s website go to

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