Tree protected against felling despite safety warning

Sheffield City Council have protected a cedar tree with up to 150 more years left in it, despite a tree surgeon saying it was dangerous.

By Molly Williams
Wednesday, 5th June 2019, 2:05 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th June 2019, 2:11 pm
Woodvale Road, Sheffield
Woodvale Road, Sheffield

Nathan McWhinnie, an environmental officer at the council, said the tree, on Woodvale Road, is around 50 to 60 years old. After three inspections, he deemed it ‘suitable’ to protect against felling.

But the owner of the house it was planted outside of, and a local tree surgeon who inspected it, said it was dangerous.

Mark Stone, owner of the property, said: “I am very concerned that the tree has grown too large and is a danger as it is close to my house.

“This tree should not be given a preservation order as it is a potential danger to my house and our safety.”

He said the tree surgeon had told them the tree ‘could cause major damage’ if the large branch leaning towards the house breaks.

In his council report, Mr McWhinnie said: “This is not a significant hazard: the lack of any increment growth around the union indicates there is no stress on it.”

The controversial decision was made at a planning and highways meeting in which committee members voted to put a tree preservation order on it. Two committee members voted against the preservation order. 

The tree will now be protected from cutting, topping, lopping or uprooting – anyone who breaches this can get a fine of up to £20,000.