Wednesday 16 January 2019

Viewers left enchanted by Dame Judi Dench’s passion for trees

The acclaimed actress shared her love of the natural world with the nation in a special documentary.

Graham Norton Show
Graham Norton Show

By Francesca Gosling, Entertainment Reporter, Press Association

Television viewers have been left enchanted by Dame Judi Dench’s expose of trees in a one-off documentary, Judi Dench: My Passion for Trees.

The acclaimed actress took viewers on a journey exploring the history and science of trees, which she described as a lifelong passion.

She introduced fans to her sprawling wooded garden in Surrey – where she planted a yew tree in memory of her friend and fellow actor Robert Hardy – met forest experts and looked into the impact of nature on the works of Shakespeare, during the hour-long BBC One feature on Wednesday.

Dame Judi, 83, recently said of the programme: “I’d love to know more about my trees, I don’t know much about them – I just know that I love them.

“It’s mind-blowing. It’s wonderful and very exciting. I don’t know how I lived so long without knowing more about my passion, but I know now.’

“I’ve even turned my six acre garden into a secret woodland, and I see my trees as my extended family. My life now is just trees. Trees and champagne.”

Her enthusiasm proved to be infectious, with one viewer commenting over Twitter: “Never thought watching Judi Dench coo over trees for an hour would provide such televisual delight #MyPassionForTrees.”

Another added: “Tell me Dame Judi Dench’s documentary about trees isn’t the most wholesome thing EVER. #treesandchampagne #JudiDench #MyPassionforTrees.”

One commented: “Have always loved #JudiDench and watching #MyPassionforTrees makes me love her even more, her utter joy is very infectious.”

“Watching Judy Dench talk about her love of trees is the most perfect telly #passionfortrees #JudiDench,” added another.

One even complimented: “Well done Dame Judi Dench, this will inspires new generation of tree lovers.”

Another gushed: “If you didn’t catch Judi Dench’s documentary on BBC1 ‘My passion for trees’, then catch up! Quite possibly the most beautiful documentary I’ve ever seen.”

Many others said Dame Judi’s programme had taught them a lot about the plants they never knew before.

Earlier this month, the Oscar-winner told how she struggles to enjoy films due to deteriorating eyesight caused by macular degeneration.

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