Petition to save oak and hornbeam trees in Coldfall Wood

Coldfall Wood

Coldfall Wood - Credit: Flickr/Mark Hillary (CC BY 2.0)

More than 50,000 people have signed a petition to stop Haringey Council felling seven trees in ancient woodland.

Seven oak and hornbeam trees in Coldfall Wood, Fortis Green, were due to be cut down to prevent subsidence and structural damage to a neighbouring property earlier this week.

But Haringey Council, which is responsible for the wood, says it will not cut down the trees until more discussions have taken place with independent advisors and insurer AXA on Friday (March 5).

Victoria Midwinter, who is part of the campaign to save the trees, said: “They’re mature trees. In terms of climate change, mature trees capture far more carbon than new ones will.”

She continued: “Insurance companies think about taking the trees down first.


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“What we’re saying is they should be looking at all the options and not starting with the one which, while it doesn’t cost them much money, costs the local environment and community everything.”

Victoria said there is “amazing” biodiversity in ancient woodland and that felling just one tree could harm bug and bird habitats in Haringey.

A drawing by young campaigner Anna Hall

A drawing by young campaigner Anna Hall - Credit: Anna Hall

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Councillor Kirsten Hearn, the council’s cabinet member for climate change, equalities and leisure, said: “I do not want these trees to be felled.

"Haringey Council takes seriously its duty of guardianship of Coldfall Wood as an ancient woodland and local nature reserve.

“Felling these trees, or otherwise potentially funding the works to the property, are equally unpalatable.”

A spokesperson for AXA said: “We recognise the importance of woodlands and green spaces across the UK and know that these situations are often complex and emotive, however, we owe it to our customers to find a solution which protects their property.

“We are actively investigating all possible options in this case and that includes the possible construction of a tree root barrier.”

Ancient woods are areas which have been forested persistently since 1600.

In November, Haringey and AXA agreed to hold off felling four oak trees in nearby Queen’s Wood for twelve months.

Insurers are monitoring Queen’s Wood and exploring alternative options which would not see trees cut down.

Find the petition at www.change.org/p/haringey-council-protect-ancient-woodland-from-felling-by-insurers

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