There are more French connections for Harrogate’s Montpellier Hill than stylish shopping, contemporary galleries and chic cafés. With the latest chainsaw tree carvings celebrating the Tour de France, it now boasts its own Eiffel Tower.
First, we saw a cyclist emerge from the trunk of an elderly elm tree, then a Yorkshire Rose and the Fleur de Lys. But Chainsaw Mick has pulled of a feat nearly as fantastic as that of Stephen Sauvestre the original architect of the Eiffel Tower.
Using just a hand held chainsaw, Mick Burns, has intricately carved a model of the Eiffel Tower – arguably the world’s most well-known monument in the world – out of the tree’s trunk.
Patrick Kilburn, Harrogate Borough Council’s Head of Parks and Environmental Services said: Chainsaw carvings are becoming increasingly popular in this country as a way of extending the pleasure a tree can bring long after it has lived beyond its natural life. As the tree is located on Montpellier Hill and right in the sight line of the finish of the first stage of the Tour de France which will take place in Harrogate on 5 July, our brief to Mick was to make the most of the French connection. Before the Eiffel Tower was built, a total of 50 engineers made 5,300 blueprints for Stephen Sauvestre. Mick had no such blueprints and nothing but a good eye for detail and a steady hand. He has also included a carving of the Tour de France trophy and a further cyclist riding up the other side of the tree. His skill is unrivalled and we hope these carvings will bring ‘joie’ and ‘plaisir’ for years to come.