Concerned and upset

Save the trees campaign on Rustlings Road in Sheffield
Save the trees campaign on Rustlings Road in Sheffield
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Have your say

Dear Nether Edge and Sharrow councillors,

As a Psalter Lane resident of 32 years I am very concerned and upset about Council plans to deface the Nether area in the New year by felling healthy roadside trees that still have a long life expectancy and offer no risk to public safety.

For goodness’ sake, where there is damage (often slight), Amey can find ways to repair kerbstones and pavements.

They don’t have to fell trees to do this.

If the council goes ahead with this they will create large long-term ugly gaps, sometimes four or five in a row, (saplings take a long time to grow and can fail), in beautiful lines of mature trees, ruining the aesthetic of many streets across the area.

Surely, as thoughtful people with a public service ethos, you cannot seriously condone this vandalism of a conservation area that the council itself created in 2002.

Conservation means trees as well as buildings.

As for the cost of future maintenance argument – if the trees are retained, let’s see some figures comparing cost of retention against cost of felling and replanting and have an informed discussion about how any shortfall in funding might be made up over the remaining 20-odd years of the PFI contract.

Amey has monopoly power over the character of our area for the next 20 years. This is a public responsibility as well as a private investment and should be approached in the spirit of guardianship.

Amey is/will be doing a good job on the roads and street lighting.

Let’s see a good responsible job also on maintaining healthy trees.

So far, the Council consultation process with local residents and the Independent Tree Panel over the tree felling proposals has been an affront to local democracy and public accountability.

Residents’ wishes and expert opinion have generally been ignored when they have disagreed.

For example, you will be aware that, on roads where residents raised objections, The Independent Tree Panel recommended that 55 trees should be saved.

Only three trees were actually saved.

The consultation process for my street area closed on December 9.

I’m hoping, like many other residents, that this won’t be a sham.

I love this area and just don’t think, unless you’ve lived here a long time, that the council fully appreciates the long-term damage it will be doing to it if it goes ahead with its proposals.

Paul Close

Sheffield

PS Brian Lodge. I suspect that you’re not really interested in roadside trees or the foresight of the estate developers who planted them, but how on earth can that magnificent healthy 120-year -old elm on Chelsea Road with a long life ahead of it be, in your words just ‘a matter of public safety?’

Try thinking of healthy trees like this in terms of the pleasure they give to generations of residents and passers-by, not just dispensable items, and you’ll see why we residents feel so strongly about all this.

The evidence from the ‘consultation’ above would suggest that ‘damage,’ to pavements and kerbstones, however slight, is being used as a catch all for felling.