To Fell or Not to Fell

Residents in St Albans are in uproar over a row or large trees by St Albans train station are facing the chop. First Capital Connect (FCC), who is behind the proposal, state that the trees in question separate the car park from Ridgmont Road. This is in a conservation area but they claim that heavy ivy growth is affecting their health.

Tree Surgeon

A local resident is objecting these plans as he believes that it would be detrimental to the environment. He states that “Tree felling on that level, I cannot see any justification for at all. I think it is particularly disappointing considering the district council want to spend a lot of money planting saplings on Victoria Street. Trees absorb noise pollution which is particularly important for people living by the station. Trees are also important for flood water and my understanding is there is a problem with water logging in the car park. I think it is a completely objectionable proposal.”

Cllr Michael Green, who represents St Peter’s ward, has also slammed FCC. He commented: “These trees provide essential screening of the train station for nearby residents and add biodiversity to a heavily built up area. Remedial work is fine but this simply appears to be vandalism. FCC needs to think again while the district council should place a Tree Preservation Order on these trees to protect them in the future.”

The FCC maintains that this work “has to be carried out to keep the trees healthy and ensure there is no safety risk to anyone passing beneath them. It has been recommended by a horticultural specialist who we commissioned after people using the car park said they were worried about their condition.” The FCC plan on planting replacement trees for those felled and promise that every effort will be made to minimise the noise and inconvenience.

Felling trees should only be used as a last resort when the damage to the tree is so severe or there is a significant risk to the public. Professional arboriculturist such as CareFell will be able to determine whether felling is required or whether alternative steps can be taken to preserve as much of the tree as possible. You can read the full story here at the Herts Advertiser

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