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Tree Preservation Order Request, Redland

Reported in the Trees category anonymously at 21:27, Tuesday 28 July 2020

Sent to Bristol City Council less than a minute later

The London Plane (Platanus Acerifolia) on the corner of Clyde Lane and Elliston Road, BS6, is currently under threat from a recent planning application to build a residential property directly next to it. The application claims that the tree will not be affected. We do not agree, given its proximity. We have serious concerns that the tree will be damaged during the build, and afterwards, and feel that the application poses a great threat. The tree in question is a fine example of a well-established and thriving London Plane which we estimate to be at least 100 years old and as such must be protected. It is an important part of the local landscape character and a key feature of our neighbourhood which is right at the heart of the Cotham and Redland Conservation Area. This magnificent tree supports a number of birds, mammals, invertebrates and microorganisms. Some are listed on Bristol City Council’s Biodiversity Action Plan Priority Species List, including a number of different birds, bees, hedgehogs and common toads. Swifts and bats are regularly seen in the area, so it is likely that they visit the tree also. Neighbours recently reported seeing a migrating grey heron and kestrel in the tree and this is not the first time. Its loss would have a significant impact on the area where greenery, and in particular such an outstanding tree, is key to the enjoyment and well-being of residents and visitors. Greenery and wildlife in the city are an essential part of our living environment. Trees such as this are highly beneficial to human health and well-being, stimulating biodiversity in built-up areas and contributing to carbon dioxide absorption. They can also facilitate water management and reduce the effects of noise pollution. We want this mature London Plane to be protected from all current and future planning applications. With regards to the current application, directly adjacent to the tree, it is clear to us that the building works could very likely damage its root system and canopy and cause distress to the wildlife. Even if it survives this, a residential building directly underneath will force the tree to be more frequently and heavily pollarded, as stated as a requirement in the planning application. The arboricultural report refers to future potential issues such as “over-bearance, shading and potential for seasonal nuisance from plane tree pollen, a recognised irritant” and recommends regular pollarding “to minimise the impact of these issues on the quality of life of future occupants and maintain them within the parameters of reasonable tolerance”. We are concerned that any increased intervention on a more regular basis could damage the health and lifespan of the tree. Removal of branches will impact the number of leaves the tree has, which are vital to energy and growth. Furthermore, having a property directly next to and under the tree will undoubtedly drive away the abundant wildlife, affecting the survival of priority species in an important conservation area. We also suspect that future owners of the proposed property would find that the proximity of the tree would pose a nuisance and may complain that the roots pose damage to the building, leading to a request for the tree be removed.

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Updates

  • Updated with photo taken this week. Note that this is regrowth following recent pollarding so the canopy is far from maximum.

    Posted anonymously at 18:36, Sunday 2 August 2020

  • Still open, via questionnaire, 21:45, Tuesday 25 August 2020

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