All I know is that the shoes hanging in my neighborhood mark gang territory…
“For 30 years the branches of a tree on the busy A40 have been bedecked by dozens of pairs of shoes, many hanging from their laces, tied neatly. But a four-year project, funded by the National Lottery to discover why the shoes are dangled, has borne no fruit. The shoe tree, between High Wycombe and Stokenchurch, Buckinghamshire, is currently decorated with around 50 pairs of shoes, ranging from tattered working boots to smart looking women’s slip-ons.
More than £265,000 pounds of heritage lottery funding was granted to The Chilterns Woodlands Project to help provide a definitive answer – but just rumour and legend continue to live on. Some say the shoe dangling ritual, which began in the 1970s, has pagan origins and has just continued over the years. Others believe the shoes were originally thrown up as a witchcraft ritual to put a hex on unfortunate souls. Local David Holmes, 45, said: “There are so many stories about why the shoes appear in the branches.”