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Flood and safety fears as council slashes tree maintenance budget

Cllr Clive Stevens (Clifton Down) has raised serious concerns over the council planning to cut the tree maintenance budget by up to three quarters. 

Commenting he said, 

“There are many issues which include the maintenance of tree branches. If tree pollarding works are reduced then the branches will grow and grow until they fall down. This could cause a safety risk if it were it to fall on someone or something such as a car. There will be other issues such as increased leaf fall – which could lead to more flooding - a blocking out of natural light and possible subsidence issues due to tree roots.”

He continued,

“The council is trying to save money, but this idea will not achieve that overall. It is another example of 'silo thinking' at the council to save money from certain departments, but not taking account of the overall budget.

“We could probably get away with cutting down on maintenance for a year or so, but in three or four years time the council will have to pay for increased maintenance to overcome the safety risks. There are currently 1,028 tree stumps in the city which are waiting for replacement, but today we are hearing that replanting too will be affected by the cuts.

“By not maintaining our older trees we are essentially letting them grow out of control and to me the next logical step for the council would be to fell the problem trees. So passing these cuts is approving the felling of trees by default.”

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