Wacky Swedish town bids millions for tree

Wacky Swedish town bids millions for tree
An apple picker picks new varieties of apple. Photo: Heather Ainsworth/AP
A Swedish town most famous for its flaming Christmas goat has placed an eye-watering 6.3 million kronor ($742,000) bid in an attempt to rescue a 100-year-old apple tree.

The juicy story came to light after Gävle’s town council first sold a piece of land to a property developer. It then regretted the arboricultural sacrifice, and is now trying to make fans of the tree happy again.

When the developer first posted plans to build seven semi-detached houses on the site, a protest group took root, with members demanding the rescue of the seven-trunked tree they say is the largest apple-bearing structure in the country. 

The tree lovers explored all legal avenues but failed to block the planned development, and now the council wants to backtrack. 

“The tree is worth preserving and we want to buy the land so that the land owner gets compensation and does not lose out,” said council chief Inger Källgren Sawela in a statement.  

But while they welcomed the move, members of the Save the Apple Tree group remained concerned about the core issue: money. 

“We’re not going to get involved in the negotiations but the amount seems a bit low. I have my suspicions about what the answer will be,” Sylve Rolandsson told local news site gd.se

The council has said it’s not going to bite off more than it can chew and will not place a higher bid if this one fails. 

Cat Stevens, who used to live in Gävle, could not be reached for comment. Nor could the yule goat, because arsonists had long since torched it. 

READ ALSO: Is Gävle Sweden’s most random city?