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Disease forces removal of trees over 100 years old

23 April 2012

5 large Beech trees are due to be removed from the front of Victoria Cottage Homes by the end of 2012 following the recent verification of a decaying fungus. The trees, which have stood for over 100 years, will soon become unstable and present a potential hazard to homes and motorists on St Saviour’s Hill.

The symptoms of the fungi, (Giant Polypore), are not immediately obvious to the untrained eye. The only signs at ground level are the development of fungi at the base of the tree. Beneath the soil the fungi are responsible for killing off the root system to the tree which, over time, reduces the supply of water and more importantly kills the tree’s main anchor roots making it unstable and likely to fall over in strong winds.

Due to the size of the trees and their proximity to the main road and adjacent houses, removal is the only option. This decision has been taken following detailed surveys by 2 independent qualified Arborists. The recommendations from both concluded that all 5 trees are in a deteriorating condition with 3 needing to be removed before the summer.
The Housing Department intends to remove all 5 trees this year and replace the avenue of trees with a new planting scheme, which will mature and eventually replace the current view. This​ approach has been discussed and agreed with the Department of the Environment.

Bob Staddon, Head of Property Maintenance said “It is with great regret that we have been forced to take this decision. In recognition of the years that the 5 trees have dominated the area the Housing Department will be commissioning a craftsman to create a number of wooden artefacts from the felled timber so they will continue to give pleasure to the residents.”

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