Protesters will have say in battle to save Doncaster trees

Still growing: The lime trees on Bawtry Road are under threat after a report said they were diseased.'                                                                                                                Picture: Steve Taylor.
Still growing: The lime trees on Bawtry Road are under threat after a report said they were diseased.' Picture: Steve Taylor.
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Residents fighting to preserve the historic avenue of trees on one of the main approaches to Tickhill have been assured they will not be cut down without more consultation, after the intervention of their MP.

Some people feared the worst when they saw tree surgeons arrive on Bawtry Road, but it turned out the workmen employed by Doncaster Council were carrying out routine maintenance work to trim new growth from around the base of the trunks.

The avenue of lime trees that lines the A631 are 125 years old, having been planted to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887.

They have become the subject of a conservation battle after Doncaster Council and Tickhill Town Council accepted a report which said they were diseased and all of them needed to be felled.

But, following a growing campaign of protest, which has involved an online petition to 10 Downing Street, the big chop has been put on hold.

The local authority has commissioned a more up-to-date independent survey into the future of the avenue of 80 trees - that appear healthy to passers-by and other residents.

David Wynn, who is team leader of trees, woodlands and countryside for Doncaster Council, has informed the town’s MP for the Don Valley constituency, Caroline Flint, that the authority will not carry out any further work on the trees until the independent inspection has been completed.

He said that ‘although there has been a plan in place for several years’ to replace the existing lime trees with English oaks, the local authority ‘has no imminent plans’ for any tree removal to be carried out.

The results of the inspection by an independent consultant are expected to be available by early September.

Mr Wynn added that appropriate consultation would be carried out after the report is received before any decision is taken by Doncaster Council.

Residents who were extremely concerned about the removal of the avenue of limes took the opportunity to discuss their fears with Ms Flint at one of her advice surgeries.

If the felling went ahead it would cause traffic disruption on the A631 on a number of days.