I agree Steve, I think it is a southern beech Nothofagus species. possibly obliqua.
Thank you chaps, I'm sure you're correct.
The tree was noticed on the edge of a beech hanger in a mixed forest on the South Downs (Queen Elizabeth Country Park).
The drying husks (cupules?) open to reveal two triangular nuts separated by a paper thin seed, I'll have to look under the tree to see if there any seedlings I can grow-on. You'll have to help me with the identity of the various components.
I can't help thinking that there's a pun about the paper thin seeds making a buch, or is the link too tenuous?
Interestingly, when we were kids we never ate beechmast as it was said to lead to an appendicitis. I wonder .....?
Again, thank you for your help.
Bill J. Owner of Flynn the dog.