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Re The tree at Irton.

I live in York and have been following the events in Irton very closely.

Having downloaded a committee meeting update issued by North Yorkshire County Council : Yorkshire Coast and Moors County Area Committee on August 31 2011 it would appear that a report produced by Barnes Associates may have been responsible for the judge’s decision to fell the tree.

I have not been able as yet to access the report. However from the Chronology of the Committee Meeting Update dated 31 August 2011 it is disclosed that Barnes Associates considered that “the location of the tree was not sustainable and further growth was likely to result in damage to the owner’s drive and wall”.

I would argue that if the judge’s decision to fell the tree was based on the report compiled by Barnes Associates then that decision is legally flawed for the following reasons.

1 After some 40 years of growth a beech tree’s roots only grow at a rate of a foot over several decades. Additionally, it is well documented that a beech tree’s roots do not penetrate deep into the soil i.e. it is top loaded (one only has to look at the photographs taken at Irton to see this is true) .

2 Barnes Associates on their own website state and I quote “..the condition of trees should not be the first consideration. Tree Managers should consider first the usage of the land on which the trees stand, which in turn will inform the process assessing the trees.”

3 Barnes Associates stated that “the location of the tree was not sustainable “ – yet the tree had been in situ there for 80 years.

Given the above it is arguable that Barnes Associates’ report was heavily weighted in favour of the householder (who I am given to understand, purchased the property on 23 March 2006 and commenced action to remove the tree in May 2006).

It is not too late to get a stay of execution for this tree. Please use all your newspaper’s influence to approach the court for a stay for the production of further evidence.

Having lived in Scarborough for several years during the 1990s I know that the Evening News has championed many worthy causes.

Please help save this tree.

Sue Wherret

Ascot Way

York