Granville Road Estate trees: Campaigners’ last stand against felling continues in Childs Hill

Residents of the Graville Road Estate in Childs Hill are unhappy that so many trees have been cut do

Residents of the Graville Road Estate in Childs Hill are unhappy that so many trees have been cut down. From left residents Eric Morgan, Myrto Angeloglou, Tracey-Lee Sayers and Julie Gilligan. Picture: Polly Hancock - Credit: Archant

Protesters in Childs Hill have spent the last three weeks peacefully trying to prevent the loss of more than 90 trees on the Granville Road Estate.

This comes after they marked the start of the tree-felling on February 21 with a picnic designed to get in the way of the developers.

Since then a group of hardy locals have been holding forlorn demonstrations next to the trees marked for removal.

The regeneration scheme, approved by Barnet Council in 2015, will see the estate reconfigured and 132 houses built – a third will be ‘affordable.

None of the trees are protected, but that hasn’t stopped residents on the estate doing their best to express their dismay and also call for the green space to be saved.

One such resident, Eric Morgan said: “These are mature trees! The estate was built in 1962, but they were here before that.

“We’ve moved around trees to try to stop them cutting them down.”

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Retired GP Dr Myrto Angeloglou added: “We are trying where we can to prevent them cutting the trees down.

“They were going to start on the a red cedar, I sat underneath it and said ‘go on then, chop it down’.”

Childs Hill ward councillor Cllr Anne Clarke said: “It’s just horrible that so many trees are being removed for this development.

“I’ve looked at this from every angle to try and stop it, but none of the trees have protection orders and planning permission was granted 4 years ago.”

One Housing Group are mangaging the development through the firm New Granville LLP – a joint venture with developers Mullaley.

It will see changes made to the estate’s road to provide parking spaces for the new homes.

Chris Hageman, director of regeneration at One Housing, said: “The welfare and safety of people on the estate is of paramount importance to us and every step is being taken to keep individuals safe.

“We have encountered no major on-going issues since the picnic protest. As part of the development we will be planting 175 new trees on site that are replacing the 95 that are being removed.”

He added that the plans included landscaping communal spaces and children’s play areas.