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Letter: We Need to Keep ‘Leafy Surrey’ Leafy

Published on: 5 May, 2022
Updated on: 5 May, 2022

The area at Garlicks Arch where trees are being felled Google Street View

From: Ruth Brothwell

R4GV borough councillor for Worplesdon

In response to: Why Doesn’t SCC Do Its Own Highways Maintenance?

On the subject of road maintenance what about the trees? It appears many are being chopped down or  “thinned”, as today witnessed along the Portsmouth Road in Send. Haphazard and without reason. Tree stumps left quite high, branches tossed indiscriminately onto the rest of the green.

As a royalist, I have to ask – are we really supposed to take seriously the planting of the Queens Green Canopy when so many of our mature trees, much needed for carbon absorption to help with the Climate Emergency are being chopped down? All that they will be replaced with are small saplings most of which will not get cared for and will die, witness the last Jubilee efforts. This makes no sense in a Guildford with so many bad emissions stats. We need our trees.

Developers are busy felling lots of trees already which cannot be stopped due to national planning laws. What about the trees at Garlicks Arch and Oldlands? What about the Poplars in Tongham? And so many more.

Our lovely Surrey woodland is slowly being decimated.

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test 6 Responses to Letter: We Need to Keep ‘Leafy Surrey’ Leafy

  1. William Lawrence Reply

    May 5, 2022 at 5:24 pm

    I agree. SCC’s highway tree planting policy leaves a lot to be desired. It suggests mostly non-natives and favours decorative species rather than anything ecologically useful. SCC needs to start taking the climate and ecological emergencies seriously.

  2. Mark Stamp Reply

    May 5, 2022 at 5:44 pm

    I would also love to see less mowing of roadside verges and allow wildflowers to grow. This might also save the council some money.

  3. Jules Cranwell Reply

    May 5, 2022 at 6:00 pm

    If Residents For Guildford “Town” [R4GV] had reviewed the Local Plan, as promised in their manifesto, then fewer trees would have been cut down to make way for the concreting over our greensward. Perhaps Cllr Brothwell would care to enlighten us?

  4. Jim Allen Reply

    May 5, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    Sadly along Clay Lane similar devastation from a fungus is running rampant. About 20 per cent of the trees on the embankment are dead or dying.

  5. David Smith Reply

    May 6, 2022 at 3:49 pm

    I agree 100 per cent with Cllr Ruth Brothwell (R4GV, Worplesdon). It’s disgraceful. I have never seen such a barbaric mess made.
    The spoils have not been removed just chucked up into woods that are left and some is still on the road.

    If this was a private residence you would not pay a penny for this but as it’s not an individual’s money nobody cares.

  6. Ruth Brothwell Reply

    May 7, 2022 at 11:50 am

    In response to Jules Cranwell the sad fact is that the national planning laws prohibit the local councils planning committees to stop the felling of trees in order to encourage development. That’s why seeing the current “thinning” of our trees without real understanding is so bad.

    R4GV spent a lot of time revisiting the Local Plan and spent monies employing external experts, including QCs, to advise us of the law. Sadly, we found out that it would be impossible to restore our lost green belt. We learned that we were likely to come a cropper with even more development if we rushed into a formal review too soon.

    However, a huge amount is being done to improve the area especially our town centre which did not get much during the past administration and we are now looking very closely at our villages. A formal review has to happen by 2025 and it will start soon anyway.

    Meanwhile, we are encouraging our villages to create Neighbourhood Plans – well done to all those who have – as these carry a lot of weight in planning. We need our villages to stay green and healthy – we want to go on living here.

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