TWO ancient trees have been saved from the chop – but nearby willow trees are getting the axe.
Kirklees Council stepped in after residents feared the chestnut trees near the Denby Dale sub-station were to be felled.
The news comes after the Examiner revealed CE electric was planning to do the work at the start of the month – but it was called off at the last minute after resident John Jordan called for action.
And it seems he’s saved the trees from their feared fate.
A Kirklees tree officer viewed the two chestnut trees, said by different sources to be between 150 and 400 years old.
While they are in a poor condition, pollarding (pruning) them will prevent any danger of snapping or falling into the road or into the sub-station which supplies the village with power.
Jacqui Gedman, Kirklees assistant director for investment and regeneration, said: “We have come to an agreement that pollarding these trees again would make them safer and would enable them to remain. This work is due to take place on March 21 and 22.
“The land on which the trees stand is classed as operational land because of the electricity sub-station and therefore the tree preservation order on these trees can be set aside if there is a danger that the sub-station itself could be damaged.
“Likewise, if the trees threaten the highway there is a legal obligation to undertake work to make the trees safe.”
While they have taken the decision to prune the chestnut trees, willow trees at a nearby location will have to go.
On March 14 willow trees at the junction of Miller Hill and Sunny Bank will be chopped down.
They have become unsafe due to structural defects coupled with the adverse angle they are growing over the road. Kirklees Council says they are now in danger of becoming a hazard. And although they were given Tree Protection Orders in the late 1980s, they are now exempt because of the danger they pose.
Jacqui Gedman added: “Unfortunately there is no option but to remove these trees although we understand that this will have a big impact on the visual amenity of the area.
“The safety of local people using the road has to be our top priority.”
Denby Dale resident John Jordan welcomed the news the chestnut trees will be saved, adding: “If a council tree officer has decided they are not safe then I accept that. The decision should not have been taken by the electric board in isolation of anyone else.”