Local people are unhappy with a row of tree’s that have been chopped down in Looe.
The tree’s which lined the banks of the Millpool in the car park owned by Cornwall Council, were axed down to stumps without any notification.
Jo Liddemnt, from West Looe, said: “My family and I regularly walk to Kilminorth Woods, and we were saddened to find the row of cherry trees had been cut down. The cherry tree blossom always looked stunning in the Spring months, and now it has all gone.”
Looe town council and local residents had not been made aware that the tree’s were going to be felled.
Edwina Hannaford, Looe town Mayor, said: “I am very disappointed these trees have been chopped down.
“Back in 2020 I asked officers to provide a planting scheme for the Millpool car park, this was duly provided. With Covid, nothing happened till I was alerted to the fact that trees had been lopped a couple of weeks ago.
“I received no notification that these trees would be chopped down, did not receive any reports on their condition or what the replacement timetable would be.
The land which the trees were established on belongs to Cornwall Council, who also own and manage the car park. Cornwall Council have put forward a planting proposal for the Millpool car park which suggests the planting of new trees along with phased tree removal. The scheme depicts the removal and replacement of around 16 trees, the planting of 29 new trees and the permanent removal of nine trees - these tree’s are the ones which have been recently chopped down.
The new and replacement trees are due to be located all around the car park and along the banks of West Looe river. The types of trees will range from; Scarlet Oak’s, Judas trees, crab apple and Scots pine in addition to many others. However, it has not been made known when the ‘phasing’, replacement and new tree planting will take place.
Edwina continued: “It’s important that trees are replaced quickly to contribute to the Forest for Cornwall which I launched three years ago. We are currently in the planting season so I am annoyed I didn’t receive any advance notice, (which should have happened with the Councils no surprises policy).
“I’ve been given no indication when the trees will be replaced in line with the planting scheme that was presented in 2020. I continue to lobby for the urgent replacement of these trees and better communication with elected representatives so I can keep the community informed.”
Cornwall Council have responded to the concerns and have said: ‘‘Cornwall Council only considers tree removal as a last resort and such decisions are prompted by safety issues identified by our tree specialists.
‘‘Millpool Carpark is currently subject to regular tree risk management inspections. Unfortunately, during the last inspection of this site, the trees in question were identified as requiring removal due to their declining health and the impact they were having on the nearby footway.
‘‘Replacement planting for these trees is due to take place around the site in more sustainable and beneficial locations for the new trees. Some initial replacement will take place this winter, with wider tree planting and green-regeneration due to commence as a phased initiative across the site in the longer term.
‘‘As part of this longer-term plan, we are looking to increase overall tree cover and species diversity onsite – with an emphasis on biodiverse and climate-tolerant species, as well as trying to ensure that the locations of the new planting is sustainable in regards to site use, allowing the trees to develop and fully establish. This will benefit the site for years to come.