SINCE a giant oak was cut down in 2007 because it was in danger of collapse, the massive stump has remained untouched.
But now it has become this striking new 15ft tall sculpture, created with the involvement of local schoolchildren.
Chainsaw sculptor Paul Sivell was asked by Fareham Borough Council to create something out of the remains of the tree on land next to Bell Lane in Stubbington.
The design features a fox, a red kite, a squirrel and a collared dove, as well as a frieze around its lower half including butterflies and an owl.
Mr Sivell, 62, said: ‘I follow the shape of the wood, so the design can change a little as I do it. This one took me six days. The carving is something I find uplifting to do.
‘It’s hard, it’s dirty and it’s difficult work to do, but it’s a job where people come up to you and tell you what they think of it.
‘This is on a busy thoroughfare, so a lot of people were passing by and stopping. They seem to appreciate it, which is rewarding.’
Nearby schools, Crofton Hammond and Crofton Anne Dale juniors, were invited by local councillor Tim Knight to contribute to the design.
Crofton Hammond’s headteacher Ann Jennings said: ‘It’s lovely for the children to have something that as they grow up, it will be a permanent reminder that they can look at and say they were involved in.’
Sophie Lockyer, 10, from Crofton Hammond, said: ‘It’s really good because I like the way it represents both schools.’
And Jazmin Johnson, 11, from Crofton Anne Dale, added: ‘I think it’s brilliant. We all had to decorate an outline of the tree which our teacher gave us, and we tried to think of lots of ideas.
‘Hopefully no-one will come along and wreck it.’
This oak was one of two on the green until 2007. The other oak fell after developing a crack. This tree was surveyed at the same time and the decision was taken to cut it down before it also fell.