Trees set to dominate Sheffield Council meeting again

Sheffield's tree felling programme will be debated again at full council
Sheffield's tree felling programme will be debated again at full council
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Sheffield Council’s controversial policies on highways and street trees are set to be debated once again at its major meeting this month.

July’s full council will be the first time councillors have met since four tree campaigners appeared in the High Court charged with contempt.

The Lib Dems say the council is looking to extend the court injunction for a further three years whilst also extending its scope. Shadow Cabinet member for Environment, Coun Adam Hanrahan, has submitted a motion which calls on the council to “extend an olive branch” to campaigners.

Coun Hanrahan said: “With the current civil injunction coming to an end on July 25, this is an ideal time for the Labour councillors to “extend an olive branch” to tree campaigners and that their first compromise would be not seek to criminalise or send tree campaigners to prison.

“I hope that Coun Lewis Dagnall and the Leader of the Council, Julie Dore, use the opportunity afforded to them via my motion to roll back from further confrontation with tree campaigners and clearly demonstrate that they genuinely want to seek cooperation and compromise with them.”

Council Leader Julie Dore will also face questions from Lib Dem Leader Shaffaq Mohammed about the recent high court case against tree campaigner Paul Brooke. Mr Brooke was not found to have breached the city council’s civil injunction.

Coun Mohammed will ask about the cost involved in bringing the case against Mr Brooke to court as well as cost incurred by the council prior to the court hearing such as surveillance costs and staff time in preparation.

He will seek a complete breakdown of all the costs involved that will now be footed by the taxpayer.