Search

‘Destructive’ plans to chop down 162 trees on Hampstead Heath announced

11:00 15 May 2014

Hampstead Heath Trees near the Dam project. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Hampstead Heath Trees near the Dam project. Picture: Nigel Sutton

© Nigel Sutton email pictures@nigelsuttonphotography.com

Conservationists have reacted with fury after plans to chop down more than 150 trees on Hampstead Heath were revealed.

File photo: Autumn colour at boating pond on Hampstead Heath. Picture: Nigel SuttonFile photo: Autumn colour at boating pond on Hampstead Heath. Picture: Nigel Sutton

A Heath “stakeholders” group was this week told that 162 healthy specimens will be felled as part of the City of London Corporation’s much-criticised dam building project.

The news has prompted claims that some of the Heath’s “most precious” areas will be devastated by the “destructive scheme”.

These include the Stock Pond, which will lose 26 trees, and the Catchpit area, where 71 are set to go.

Campaigner David Lewis said: “Two of the Heath’s most precious locations, the Stock Pond and the Catchpit, a beautiful largely hidden area between the Viaduct Pond and the Mixed Bathing Pond, will be devastated.

“This destructive scheme must not be allowed to go ahead.“

English Heritage received widespread criticism for taking an axe to 23 trees at Kenwood in February despite a successful campaign to save three much-loved large copper beeches there.

Mr Lewis said “much worse is in store for Hampstead Heath” with the latest threat.

It comes as a drive is launched to raise £100,000 for a High Court challenge against the City’s controversial dam project.

The Heath and Hampstead Society, which is leading the Dam Nonsense campaign, is calling on all its members to contribute to the judicial review fund.

Chairman Tony Hillier said the tree felling proposal is “just as disastrous a part of the plans as any other aspect”.

He added: “These measures are not legally necessary and that’s what we’re taking them to judicial review about.”

The Corporation, which manages the Heath, also wants to cut down 15 trees at each of the men’s and ladies’ bathing ponds.

Two of the Heath’s treasured London Planes near to the Hampstead No. 2 Pond will also be removed.

Mr Lewis, co-ordinator of Protect Our Ponds, which supports the Dam Nonsense campaign, alleged the Corporation had not been completely up-front about the situation.

“If you took part in the City of London’s public consultation, you can be forgiven for thinking that the works would be tree-friendly,” he said.

“Far from it. You have been the victim of distraction and omission.”

A Corporation spokesman said no “veteran” trees would be removed and that efforts are being made to bring down the number set to disappear, though it is currently only 0.8 per cent of the Heath’s stock of 20,000 trees.

He said the trees would be removed to “strengthen the ponds, protect them from dam collapse and encourage greater biodiversity in the ponds”.

He added: “We have always said that we would seek to minimise tree loss as part of this important dam strengthening project.”

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Yesterday, 17:25
Striking junior doctors outside the Royal Free Hospital during a national day of action 10.02.16.

Junior doctors protested on the picket lines of the Whittington and Royal Free hospitals today after staging a second walk-out.

Yesterday, 16:43
A basement excavation next door to AIR studios could leave  the famous recording venue out of action

Camden planners have made a U-turn by ruling that an 11,700-strong petition against a basement development next to AIR studios will not be ignored.

Yesterday, 16:30
Alex Lyons with her children Oscar, five, and Benjy, three.   Picture: Nigel Sutton

Haringey Council has U-turned on its plan to close a loophole allowing families to secure places for their children at some of the borough’s most popular primary schools even after moving miles away from catchment areas.

Yesterday, 16:07
Roundway

Day centres for autistic, vulnerable, and disabled people cannot be saved by using money raised from a proposed two per cent council tax rise, Haringey Council’s cabinet has ruled.

Yesterday, 10:30
Ergun Yasar will be sentenced next week

A man from Crouch End has admitted being part of a gang which cheated a casino in Paddington out of thousands of pounds by ‘card swapping’.

Yesterday, 09:35
Striking junior doctors outside the Whittington Hospital during a national day of action 10.02.16.

Junior doctors have walked out of the Royal Free and Whittington hospitals for the second time in weeks over contract disputes.

Tue, 21:05
Haringey Council Civic Centre

Haringey Council has U-turned on its plan to close a loophole allowing families to secure places for their children at some of the borough’s most popular schools even after moving miles away from catchment areas.

Tue, 17:29
Tulip Siddiq with volunteers from Royal Free young volunteers programme

Inspirational young volunteers were praised in parliament for their ‘amazing’ contribution to the Royal Free NHS trust.

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe