Towering trees set to be felled

PUBLISHED: 10:05 07 February 2008 | UPDATED: 08:20 02 June 2010

The height of the leylandii trees towering over the homes in Anderson Close, Leverington

The height of the leylandii trees towering over the homes in Anderson Close, Leverington

TOWERING leylandii trees, that have cast shadows over a row of homes for 20 years, are set for the chop after years of campaigning by neighbours. The trees stand more than 12 metres tall and have left the six homes in Anderson Close, Leverington, with har

The residents in the shadow of the trees

TOWERING leylandii trees, that have cast shadows over a row of homes for 20 years, are set for the chop after years of campaigning by neighbours.

The trees stand more than 12 metres tall and have left the six homes in Anderson Close, Leverington, with hardly any source of natural light in their gardens.

But, after residents grouped together to get the trees lopped, and without success after talking to the owner of the trees, Fenland District Council stepped in and is set to approve enforcement action next week.

The trees surround the garden of "Fenways", in Sutton Road, Leverington, owned by Neville Young.

Campaigners said they have tried a number of times to speak to Mr Young and resolve the dispute, but claim that calls were not returned and notes pushed through the door were not responded to.

Joanna Barnes, who moved to Anderson Close in June 2006, said: "We have been told they are going to be lopped to about two metres tall at the start of next month if the enforcement goes through.

"It is unfortunate that we had to go to the lengths of complaining to the council, but we have been deprived of natural sunlight because of the trees."

Fellow campaigner Gwen Worby has lived with the shadow of the trees since moving to Anderson Close 20 years ago. She said: "We don't get a lot of light through the trees and the kitchen light is always turned on."

Harold Yatigammana, also a protester, said: "It is about time it was finally sorted."

Fenland Council's development services manager Nigel Brown will tell the council's planning committee next Wednesday that an Anti-Social Behaviour Order was enforced on Mr Young in July.

But, "as no appeal has been lodged within the initial period and no attempts have been made to reduce the height of the hedge", he recommends the committee gives the thumbs-up for the council to carry out the work.

Mr Brown said: "The notice offered a two month period in which to appeal the notice and, in the absence of an appeal, a further period of three months to reduce the hedge in accordance with the remedial notices.

"Having given consideration of the circumstances of the matter officers have concluded that it is expedient to enter the site and carry out the required works and recover the costs of the works.

"The arboricultural officer has contacted the owners of the hedge and it appears that voluntary compliance with the notices will not be achieved.

"The matter is also urgent as any works to remove the hedge must be carried out before spring to avoid affecting any nesting birds."

Mr Young was unavailable for comment at the time of publication but, in a letter he sent to campaigners, said the trees were more than 30 feet tall in 1980 when the homes were being built.

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