Hundreds of people have their say on the future of street trees in Sheffield

More than 280 people and organisations took part in a consultation on Sheffield Council’s street tree partnership working strategy.

Wednesday, 20th January 2021, 12:30 pm

Council officers said local pride in being a green city oozed out of the consultation and was coupled with a desire to be a pioneer, showing the way for other cities to follow.

In report, they added: “Although the consultation on the working strategy is closed, the ongoing way of working will be to continue to engage with stakeholders and communities on the outcomes, actions, and programme of work of the new street tree partnership. The strategy and actions will be kept under review and updated as circumstances evolve or change.”

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More than 280 people have taken part in the consultation with Sheffield Council

It aims to balance safely retaining street trees for longer while maintaining the highways network.

The consultation took place over 12 weeks between July and October last year.

There was a total of 282 responses, 271 of which were from individuals and 11 were from organisations including the Forestry Commission, Joined Up Heritage, Sheffield Tree Action Group, the Woodland Trust and Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust.

There was a mix of comments, with some supporting the strategy and others suggesting improvements.

Suggestions included education from nurseries through to universities to increase awareness of tree benefits and to create opportunities for community members to share enthusiasm and knowledge.

Some said biodiversity and wildlife protection should be more central to the strategy.

Others said it failed to address problems trees can cause such as creating hazards and pavement obstructions.

The findings of the consultation were shared in a council report ahead of a cabinet meeting this week in which it is due to be discussed.

In the report the council also noted there was an over-representation of people aged 55-74, people from white backgrounds and those living in the west and south west of the city.

There was an under-representation of young people aged between 16-34, people from BAME backgrounds and those living in east and north wast Sheffield.

The consultation will be used to inform the final strategy due to be produced by spring.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.