Leave the trees alone

Country Life Every Week - - Town & Country -

SHEFFIELD coun­cil is pre­par­ing to chop down the city’s favourite tree and lo­cal cam­paign­ers, who have been fight­ing this and sim­i­lar ac­tions else­where in the city for months, are none too happy.

The 120-year-old Hunt­ing­don Elm in the Nether Edge is one of only four known ma­ture elms in the city to sur­vive Dutch elm dis­ease and is be­lieved to pos­sess re­sis­tance to the dis­ease, but now, it—and the threat­ened white-let­ter hairstreak but­ter­fly it sup­ports —will fall prey to the even more lethal health-and-safety ex­perts.

The news fol­lows a scene out of ‘Putin’s Rus­sia’ in Novem­ber, ac­cord­ing to for­mer MP Nick Clegg, as Sheffield coun­cil con­trac­tors de­scended on a Hal­lam street un­der cover of dark­ness and ‘dragged’ peo­ple out of bed to move their cars so they could chop down eight trees; some pro­tes­tors were ar­rested and the coun­cil apol­o­gised.

Then there’s a dis­pute over the Rivelin Val­ley Road, ‘a Sheffield land­mark’ and, at 31 ∕2 miles long, the sec­ond long­est av­enue of limes in the UK, with 700 ma­jes­tic trees that are more than 100 years old; the coun­cil wants to re­move 31 of them, claim­ing that the roots might be dam­aged when the road is resur­faced. A pe­ti­tion at www.change.org, called ‘Save the trees on Rivelin Val­ley Road’, has al­ready reached nearly 6,000 sig­na­tures.

The Rivelin Val­ley Road is the sec­ond long­est av­enue of lime trees in the UK

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