Residents were outraged at a pre-April Fool's Day hoax that announced ancient trees would be felled and replaced by telephone masts in a Dorset town.
Locals complained after seeing fake planning notices bearing the West Dorset District Council logo on much-loved trees in Bridport.
The forms announced that a telephone company had applied for permission to fell all local trees.
The deadline for public comments on the scheme was stated as 1 April.
The notices apparently bore the signature of John Greenslade, the council's development control manager.
Mr Greenslade said: "These notices are a hoax. There has been no planning application.
"We sometimes get this sort of thing around April 1 and we hope that this April fool has not caused local people too much concern," he said.