There is nothing more stately and quintessentially British than a yew hedge. There are several forms of Taxus but only really Baccata are mass grown for evergreen hedging. They are a little slow growing, so buy as big as you can afford, but once established they make a perfect formal hedge. The foliage is a lovely dark green, very dense and the plant can be clipped to any shape or height. There is a flush of growth in spring and a second smaller flush in late summer. The new growth is much lighter green and matures to the darker green with age. In winter, on the female bushes, the classic red, squidgy yew berries are an important winter feed for birds. These should be pointed out to small children as the seeds could make them ill if eaten.
Yew can be pruned with a pair of shears or a hedge cutter and it is best done on a cool day in summer between the two growth flushes.