Page last updated at 12:30 GMT, Sunday, 14 December 2008

Call to safeguard ancient trees

The Woodland Trust said trees need to be protected by the public

Residents in a Nottinghamshire town have called for ancient trees to get more protection after parts of a wood near her house were felled.

Sara Chadd, from North Muskham, claimed some of the trees were centuries old, and the area was being ruined.

She said current protection orders could be too easily revoked and more checks would keep woodland safer.

The county council said the trees would have been assessed by a forestry professional before being removed.

Ms Chadd said: "I am sick of chainsaws, I have had them all year and over the years I have seen (the wood) literally turned into an open space."

She added: "I think hard woods in England should be taken under royal protection, just like the swans were in the Middle Ages.

"Because there has to be something beyond one person at the local council who can say 'yea' or 'nay' to the death of a tree."

Potential danger

The community was going to form a group to pressure local councillors into protecting the woods, she said.

Anthony Wilford, a local carpenter, said he could not find anything wrong with the felled trees.

"Absolutely nothing. The yew tree is particularly resistant against disease and infection from beetles or whatever because it is quite poisonous.

"So it is highly unlikely there is any disease in the yew trees or anything that would give reason for this sort of treatment."

The Woodland Trust is also calling for greater protection for our ancient trees and has launched a website, called Wood Watch, to advise the public on what they can do to help.

A spokesman for the county council said: "Generally, we don't fell trees unless they are diseased or dangerous.

"The three trees that were removed would have been inspected by a forestry professional who decided that in this case there was no option but to remove the trees as they were either dying or a hazard to the public."

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14 Feb 08 |  Nottinghamshire

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