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Rutherglen Reformer - - News From The Pews -

Over­grown or dan­ger­ous trees are one of my most reg­u­lar com­plaints as a coun­cil­lor.

What be­gan as a seedling 20 years ago is now a 30 foot gi­ant, shed­ding leaves over gar­dens, at­tract­ing birds to nest (and per­haps foul be­low them), block­ing light and view, get­ting tan­gled in tele­phone wires or ob­scur­ing street lights.

Yet Ruther­glen is a place of trees – lin­ing the broad av­enue of the his­toric Main Street, adorn­ing Over­toun Park, or adding to the at­trac­tion of in­nu­mer­able lo­cal gar­dens and wild places.

Plan­ning laws re­quire that trees should be pre­served or planted as part of any plan­ning devel­op­ment. So new hous­ing es­tates will re­quire to con­tain suit­able trees.

The Cathkin Relief Road, cur­rently be­ing built between Fern­hill and Blair­beth/Burn­side, will re­place or plant a large num­ber of trees.

Some trees may even have a tree preser­va­tion or­der on them. Trees help elim­i­nate car­bon emis­sions and con­trib­ute to sav­ing the earth from global warm­ing.

The coun­cil’s tree ex­perts will in­ves­ti­gate com­plaints about dan­ger­ous or over­grown trees on coun­cil-owned land. They may prune trees which are a prob­lem, but will not usu­ally cut down a healthy tree.

Roads of­fi­cials re­quire pe­ri­od­i­cally to make sure that tree branches over­hang­ing roads are pruned to avoid in­ter­fer­ence with vis­i­bil­ity for pedes­tri­ans or mo­torists or prob­lems with tele­phone wires or street lights – it is the duty of house­hold­ers to deal with over­hang­ing trees from their own gar­dens which cause such prob­lems.

Res­i­dents may have rights against their neigh­bours too. The High Hedges (Scot­land) Act 2013 al­lows peo­ple to ap­ply - for a fee - to the coun­cil for a high hedges or­der if their en­joy­ment of their prop­erty is ad­versely af­fected by a high hedge (a row of two or more trees/shrubs which form a bar­rier to light) of two me­tres or more. Thoughts on Trump The US Pres­i­den­tial de­bates are fas­ci­nat­ing but enor­mously de­press­ing.

The ob­scene and de­mean­ing com­ments about women made by Don­ald Trump would have seen a Bri­tish politi­cian sacked within hours.

Some Repub­li­cans have re­pu­di­ated him yet oth­ers who claim to be­lieve in old­fash­ioned fam­ily val­ues con­tinue to sup­port him.

It is a mys­tery how they man­age to square fam­ily val­ues with their back­ing for Don­ald Trump – or in­deed with the ab­surd free-for-all on firearms own­er­ship which has con­trib­uted to such a lethal level of gun killings in the USA.

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