Quite apart from the remarkable history of Christianity surrounding Nevern Church dating back to the 6th Century, our churchyard is also renowned for the “Bleeding Yews” which line the access path to the front of the Church.
These ancient yew trees (Taxus Baccata) are believed to be some 700 years old and one of these (the second on the right as you pass the main entrance gate – you will need to view it on the rear side) is known as the Bleeding Yew. It is not unusual for a tree to produce sap where it may have been damaged but generally such sap dries up quite quickly.
Nobody seems to be able to explain the phenomenon of this yew nor does anyone seem to know why this is happening. But, it has been “bleeding” for as long as anyone can remember with a blood-red sap (with a consistency similar to blood) which can be particularly spectacular in certain lights.
As one might expect there are several legends and myths explaining why the Nevern yew tree bleeds. Indeed you could probably write a book on these alone but, as Christians, possibly the most endearing one is that it is bleeding in sympathy with Jesus as he was crucified on the cross. None of this satisfactorily explains it – unless of course it is true and is a sign of a modern day miracle!
Please note: Unless otherwise stated all photographs are the copyright of Peter Heard, Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society