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Residents are angry at tree work without consultation

ANXIOUS campaigners have been reassured trees in a Felpham road will survive a cull.

 

Three whitebeams along Blakes Road have been axed because they were dying. But fears at least two others in the road were also for the chop have been allayed by the county council this week.

 

The area’s county councillor, Graham Jones, said: “There has been a real lack of communication about this

 

“The residents were unaware this was going to happen. They saw two trees being axed last Friday and a third being given the chop this week.

 

“‘No parking’ cones were also put out around other trees in the road and that led people to think they were also going to be chopped down.

 

“But the workmen showed us their schedule and all they are going to do to those trees is to prune them.

 

“There was a lot of concern about what was going to happen. None of that would have occurred if the neighbours had been sent a letter informing them about the situation.”

 

“As the local member, I had no idea what was going to happen. The parish council wasn’t told, the parish tree warden wasn’t told and Felpham Village Conservation Society wasn’t told either.

 

“I should be told when something like this is going to take place so, if I’m going to get a reaction from people to what is happening, I have got the answers to tell them.”

 

The workmen first went along to Blakes Road late last Friday morning. They chopped down two trees opposite each other about halfway along the road. A third tree outside the tennis courts was also cut down on Monday.

 

Glenn Powell, the conservation society’s vice-chairman, said: “The main point is that there has been no information or consultation. No-one knew about the tree felling, which is appalling.”

 

One of the first trees to be felled was outside the bungalow of Jo Owen. She said: “What’s happened is dreadful.

 

“The work was done when I was out last Friday. As far as I was concerned, it’s a healthy tree and it had been here as long as I had – 59 years.

 

“I had been told it was about 100 years old. I could have understood if it had needed to be pruned back for safety reasons. We need trees to absorb carbon dioxide. We can’t do without them. But too many are being cut down to make way for housing.”

 

A spokesman for West Sussex County Council said: “The trees had to be removed from Blakes Road because they were dead, diseased and dangerous.”

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