My letter published in Beverley Guardian today:
The felling of the trees on New Walkergate is one of the latest in the long list of crimes against nature brazenly committed by ERYC (East Riding of Yorkshire Council) in our name and with our money. Why? Perhaps they have a contract with a company which fells trees so they have to find jobs to keep them busy? Is someone profiting from the wood? Or is it simply a corporate mechanistic mindset which wants everything - including nature - to be ‘tidy’? The unevenness in the ground made by the tree roots was not a hazard to the footpath and it could have been made into an attractive feature. The wall could have been strengthened. Does London remove its fantastic old plane trees which have grown through and around the railings in the parks? No.
Saying they will replace the trees with ones 'specially chosen and sourced for the site' is the newspeak we have come to expect from ERYC meaning 'you know nothing: we ‘experts’ know best'. Most people instinctively protect trees - and they are right because the older a tree is the more biodiversity it hosts, the more carbon it sequesters and the more beautiful it becomes.
Nature thrives on diversity. It is beautiful because it is NOT tidy. Beverley is an ancient town which should not look like a Milton Keynes. ERYC has a biodiversity action plan, but does ERYC itself take any notice of it? What ERYC displays is a complete lack of understanding of nature, heritage, beauty, and people - in fact most things which matter. Machine- chemical- newbuild - and road-obsessed ERYC is the thing which should go, not the trees.