4 July 2013…..Head Teacher Richard Bradford wants to inflict a floodlit astroturf pitch on the poor neighbours around Dorothy Stringer School and to fell Wheatley elms, beech, field maple, lime, ash, hazel, hawthorn, elder, dogwood, sycamore and wild privet – no less than 50 healthy trees – in order to do it.
The hurricane of 1987 destroyed a massive amount of tree cover and it will be another 50 years before anything like the level mature trees is seen again. In the meantime, developers and the casually stupid are chopping down mature trees with impunity. Even trees protected by a TPO (Tree Protection Order) or in a Conservation Area get chopped down if a few saplings are planted to replace them.
Birds do not nest in saplings. Garden birds are in critical and steep decline and loss of habitat HAS to be a factor. Significant oxygen production and pollution reduction is not achieved by saplings. Human beings feel better, benefit psychologically, around trees.
Does Richard Bradford know what message he is sending to pupils at Dorothy Stringer by disvaluing the tree cover his school is so lucky to have? That school has already felled trees for development in the past and seems slack in its attitude to them again now.
This council is led by a Green Administration and it is high time it put a mature tree policy in place that goes beyond Conservation Area and TPO protection. If a Green Administration does not have any interest in promoting the value of trees for at least pollution control, it is not surprising that it is so easy for the public to get it wrong. Who is informing them and providing serious planning guidance that prevents unnecessary pollardings and fellings?
In the meantime if you wish to support the campaign to stop this huge loss of trees proposed at Dorothy Stringer School,