Trees which separate the Leeds Liverpool Canal towpath from the new housing development site off Maghull’s Turnbridge Road have had a preservation placed on them by Sefton Council and residents living close to the trees have had a letter from the council today. The large trees in the background of this shot are some of those affected by the order:-
The order takes takes effect on a provisional basis from 20th August and will continue in force on this basis for a further 6 months or until the Order is confirmed by the Council, whichever first occurs. In effect the provisional period is to allow residents affected by the Order to make representations and the 18th September is the date by which such representations need to be made.
Independent, Lib Dem and Labour councillors have all been involved in this matter and the action taken by Sefton Council seems to be the best all round solution. The Order means that anyone wishing to do any work to the trees has to have the consent of Sefton Council.
Well the land clearance machinery had all disappeared by last Friday evening but a lot of trees had been felled by then.
This view of the site is from the Leeds Liverpool Canal towpath. Uprooted tree stumps can be seen on the far side of the site. Click on the photo to enlarge it.
Many of the stumps have now, I understand, been marked with a number and I am presently assuming that this was done by the Forestry Commission’s Woodland Officer. If I have this wrong please shout.
The highest number on the stumps I understand is 27. I am not sure what girth of stump qualifies as one that collectively would need a felling licence but I suspect that the amount of felling that has taken place would probably have required a felling licence.
BUT DID SEFTON COUNCIL DO ALL THAT IT COULD?
The worrying question is this though. Could Sefton Council have taken some action, to at least pause the felling whilst the Forestry Commission investigated the felling licence issue, by putting temporary tree preservation orders on the trees within this site? If so why did they not do so when first when first made aware of the mass felling of trees earlier last week? This will need to teased out of a local authority that was seeming saying to those who contacted them that they could not do anything.