Trees planted in Reffley Wood to mark life of Ion Trewin

Ion Trewins widow Sue, daughter and grandchildren at Reffley Wood on Saturday ANL-160703-132544001
Ion Trewins widow Sue, daughter and grandchildren at Reffley Wood on Saturday ANL-160703-132544001

The life and work of Ion Trewin, literary director of the Booker Prize Foundation, has been celebrated with a ceremonial tree planting.

It took place at the weekend at the Woodland Trust’s Reffley Wood in Lynn.

Mr Trewin, whose family has lived in Snettisham for many years, died in April 2015 aged 71 following a short battle with cancer.

His working life was devoted to books and literature, but he was able to combine this with his love of trees when establishing a partnership with the Woodland Trust.

His widow, Sue, his daughter and three of Mr Trewin’s grandchildren were present at the ceremony at Reffley Wood on Saturday to plant five oak trees.

Mrs Trewin said: “I am delighted that the Woodland Trust has honoured Ion in this way, and their choice of tree is excellent as Ion was strong and loved oak trees.”

Laura Judson of the Woodland Trust added: “Tree planting every year with the Man Booker Judges as their last ‘official’ duty has always been a pleasure and great fun.

“Without fail every year I looked forward to seeing Ion and hearing his thoughts on the judging process, his excitement for the next year, which was always palpable, and the quiet satisfaction we all got by planting our significant Man Booker trees and walking through new planted trees and our bluebell filled ancient woodlands.”

Mr Trewin was the literary editor of The Times from 1972-1979 and then with Hodder & Stoughton (for whom he published Thomas Keneally’s Schindler’s Ark) until 1992 and Orion Publishing Group to 2006.

He was director of the Man Booker Prize and the biographer of the controversial Conservative MP and Cabinet minister Alan Clark. He went on to edit Mr Clark’s diaries, too.

His funeral took place at Sandringham church.

Every year since 2009, the Trust has planted the ‘Booker Dozen’, 13 trees, one for each of the long-listed books chosen for the Man Booker Prize, which is publishing’s pre-eminent award for fiction in the English language.

The planting locations have included woods in Essex, Hertfordshire and Leicestershire, with the trees providing a symbolic gesture to compensate for the trees felled in order to produce the 100-plus books submitted for the prize each year.