The Trustees have no more wish than anyone else to fell trees, or do any kind of tree work, that is unnecessary. However the Trust has a legal responsibility for doing what is reasonable to keep the Park safe and to manage the Park in a responsible way.
Tree work can involve a variety of tasks. e.g. felling, pollarding, coppicing, crown lifting, removing dangerous branches, and severing climbing plants such as ivy.
Work on trees is only undertaken if they are:
- a danger to the public
- too close to others trees which prevents them from maturing (which means some need to be thinned out)
- preventing a sufficiently varied habitat from developing
- damaging the Scheduled Ancient Monument or preventing it from being fully appreciated (The Trust liaises with Historic England on these issues).
The Park, apart from the eastern section of the Railway Walk, is in the Clare Conservation Area. This means that the approval of St Edmundsbury Borough Council Planning Department is required for most tree work that is carried out. The procedure the Trust follows is:
- An independent arboriculture specialist reviews all the trees in the Park annually and produces a report on the work that needs to be done.
- The above report is reviewed by a qualified tree surgeon with the person who has produced the arboriculture report.
- An application, supported by the report, is sent to the Tree Officer in the Planning Department of St Edmundsbury Borough Council.
- The Tree Officer inspects the trees concerned and either approves or rejects the proposals.