Save our Happy Man Tree, Hackney. Ancient Plane tree to be cut down by Berkeley Homes
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This beautiful London plane tree grows on the public pavement on the North End of Lordship Rd. It began to grow around 1870, which makes it around 150 years old. At that time in this area there were large private houses being built. The tree survived that development. In the 20th century these houses were replaced with the Woodberry Down estate. The tree survived that development. It also survived many other changes to its surroundings such as the arrival of the motor car and road widening schemes. But now, in this latest intervention by humans, this tree has been condemned to be cut down. Berkeley Homes are developing the estate over a period of 30 years. They have not been able to consider how something as ancient and majestic as this tree might be incorporated into their business plans for the area. And because it is not part of their consideration, the tree has now been condemned to be cut down. This was confirmed at a Hackney Council planning meeting on April 23rd where permission was granted. This is despite the tree being under various protection legislation.
By now it is abundantly clear how important trees are to our planet. For example, the carbon capture potential of this tree is enormous. But replacing it with saplings is not the point. It takes 150 years to grow a 150 year old tree. It probably takes 4 hours to destroy one. No compensation offered can make recompense for a 150 year old plant being destroyed. This is no longer about calculations of benefit and cost it is about how we want to live our lives and how we respect the other beings that live on this planet. Many of us become upset when looking at the pictures of trees being felled in the Amazon and we demand action from our governments. Here in our own road one equivalent tree is being allowed to be cut down by our council and its officers.
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