We’ve put forward St Julian’s Well tree in Ludlow for a national award

Update 4 September 2016

Alas, our bid has not been shortlisted by the Woodland Trust. That’s a shame becasue this is such a fine tree.

Main article 5 August 2016

Every year, the Woodland Trust runs the Tree of the Year competition. Rather at the last moment, we councillors decided to put forward the horse chestnut at St Julian’s Well as a candidate. The tree itself is striking and its symbiotic association with the medieval well makes it very unusual.

Among our aims in entering the competition are to publicise the tree and its friendship with the ancient well. We talk to a lot of people who don’t realise that St Julian’s is the well that supplied Ludlow. Some don’t even know the well is a well.

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Axing two oak trees to improve views of Ludlow from Whitcliffe Common is the unacceptable face of environmentalism

Update: 1 August 2016

This morning, BBC Radio Shropshire broadcast two interviews on the controversy. In the first, Tracey Huffer and I are interviewed by Genevieve Tudor. Listen here. In the second, Daphne Jones presents the case for the Friends of Whitcliffe Common. Listen here. There has been a lively discussion on whether the trees should be felled or not on the BBC Radio Shropshire Facebook page.

Main article: 28 July 2016

There is a row going on between those who favour felling healthy oak trees on Whitcliffe Common and others, including myself, who find the idea of taking a chainsaw to trees just to improve the view abhorrent.

Last night, Ludlow Town Council voted to object to the proposals to fell two oak trees on Whitcliffe Common. That was the right decision and one I fully support. These trees should be preserved. The managers of the common want the trees cut down and coppiced to improve views towards the historic town. I don’t think this is sufficient justification. Axing good quality oak trees is the unacceptable face of environmentalism.

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Rocks Green supermarket should be scaled down to protect landscape says Shropshire Council tree officer

Shropshire Council’s tree and woodland protection officer, Dougald Purce, has criticised the proposal for a new supermarket at Rocks Green because the design puts profit before landscape protection. In a comment on the application last week, he said:

In order to maximise the commercial potential of the site the buildings and parking have taken priority over landscape, a less adventurous proposal would be better able to provide a sustainable integrated development at this key gateway to Ludlow. Continue reading “Rocks Green supermarket should be scaled down to protect landscape says Shropshire Council tree officer”

Rocks Green supermarket should be scaled down to protect landscape says Shropshire Council tree officer

Shropshire Council’s tree and woodland protection officer, Dougald Purce, has criticised the proposal for a new supermarket at Rocks Green because the design puts profit before landscape protection. In a comment on the application last week, he said:

In order to maximise the commercial potential of the site the buildings and parking have taken priority over landscape, a less adventurous proposal would be better able to provide a sustainable integrated development at this key gateway to Ludlow. Continue reading “Rocks Green supermarket should be scaled down to protect landscape says Shropshire Council tree officer”

On birds and trees, planning and police – when can developers chop down trees?

Update May 2016

PC David Hart, mentioned below, is no longer a member of the West Mercia Wildlife Unit. See the West Mercia police website for the latest Shropshire contact.

Main article 25 May 2015

When can developers chop down trees? The short answer is anytime. Unless they disturb nesting birds, fall foul of Tree Preservation Orders or the work is extensive enough to require a licence from the Forestry Commission.

This article is about disturbing birds. It follows two recent incidences of tree cutting on developments in Ludlow during the nesting season. I am making no suggestion that birds or their nests have been harmed during these operations but I thought it would be useful to clarify what the rules are. I can’t comment on specific cases until I get further information from officers.

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