Replanting the Angel Oak

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A permanent, performative artwork sited on Peckham Rye to revive William Blake's creative vision from the margins.

In 1765 at the age of 8, William Blake saw his first vision while walking on Peckham Rye. 'A tree filled with angels, bright angelic wings bespangling every bough like stars.'

In collaboration with the Blake Society and the Forestry Commission, an oak sapling was saved from the eroding margins of England and transplanted to Peckham Rye as an invitation to future generations of Peckham Angels.


The Angel Oak was planted on Peckham Rye, Sunday September 2011 by Linda Foster of the libraries of Peckham. Read a report from Guardian Books


with the support of





The eroding margins of England






Finding a sapling to bring to Peckham Rye






Doomed oak







The Angel Oak




"I have been very near the Gates of Death & have returned very weak & an Old Man feeble & tottering, but not in Spirit & Life, not in The Real Man The Imagination which Liveth for Ever. In that I am stronger & stronger as this Foolish Body decays."

William Blake

Letter to George Cumberland, April 12, 1827.