Horse Chestnut trees have been part of our Village and a feature of Chapel Lane for almost 100 years and it is extremely difficult to know how to break the news they finally have to be removed.
The Tree and Woodland Team at Sefton Council have been monitoring their condition for a long time now and for the past year they have watched very carefully, as the images taken in August show. Residents will have noticed that the leaves began to fall at the end of July when they showed severe ‘distress’. The conclusion has been reached that because of their age, health and structural condition they should be cut down and replaced. It is the responsibility of the Sefton Council to keep us safe from dead branches falling on to pedestrians or causing damage to properties close by and the recent bad weather has given greater concern.
In recent years the Parish and Ward Councillors have provided funding for new trees, and last year six were replaced on the corner with Halsall and Three Tuns Lanes.
The Parish Council has therefore set aside more funds to replace all five as soon as the conditions are right in the New Year.
After their monthly meeting, the Chairman of the Parish Council reported that ‘sadly we cannot stop age and time taking its toll, but we can provide the funds for healthy replacements, and ensure that future generations will benefit from their presence, as we have in the past.
The trees have been there for a very long time, they were once in front gardens and so the contractors will have a delicate job removing the old roots, preparing pits deep enough for the new ones and making sure we don’t disturb any services underground.
A spokesman for Sefton Council said: “The trees identified for removal have been showing signs of decline in recent years and if left will pose an unacceptable Health and Safety Risk to users of the highway. The tree works will be undertaken in the New Year and new planting will follow. Leaflets will be sent out to businesses and residents directly affected by the works in due course and we will be in constant dialogue with Formby Parish Council.” The appropriate public notices will be prepared and we do hope residents will understand and support the plan.