Fortune Green Christmas tree battle: Camden Society rejoice as council refuse to grant Pines and Needles trading licence
- Credit: Archant
Christmas came early for activists in West Hampstead last night after Camden Council refused to grant christmas tree sellers Pines and Needles a licence to trade from Fortune Green.
The community had rallied against the company after its operation last year lead to the charity-run Mill Lane Garden Centre – who sell Christmas trees from their premises yards away – seeing sales fall by a quarter.
Jill Henry, who lives in the area, started a petition to show the level of opposition to Pines and Needles.
Jill told the Ham&High: “Well, it’s just great news! It’s Christmas come early for the Mill Lane Garden Centre.
“We will continue to work hard in the community for Mill Lane.”
You may also want to watch:
Mill Lane Garden is run by the Camden Society and its profits go directly towards funding its work with people who have learning disabilities.
Camden Society chief exec Denise Largin said: “Well done to the petitioners. This is like getting a great big early Christmas hug from our local community. It feels amazing!
- 1 Skyscraper plans rejected by Westminster Council over damage to views
- 2 New sixth form site for Westminster school gets go-ahead
- 3 'Family unit': 28 Church Row wins reader's favourite restaurant
- 4 Old Hampstead police station sold by Department for Education at £4m loss
- 5 Man left with £1,200 vet bill after puppy 'mauled' on Hampstead Heath
- 6 Outdoor dining and one-way traffic to stay in St John's Wood High Street
- 7 Crouch End entrepreneur supports Moroccan women with textile business
- 8 Taste of Nawab: A community staple with Tripadvisor acclaim
- 9 High Court date set for disabled swimmer's challenge over ponds charges
- 10 Christmas at Kenwood: 'Winter wonderland' primed for Hampstead Heath
“An offer arrived by email yesterday afternoon. But it is far too late for this year because we have already bought our trees and done our financial planning.”
Fortune Green councillor Flick Rea was among those to take the case to town hall officers.
Cllr Rea told this newspaper: “Pines and Needles said they would work with the community, but they only came through with an offer last week.
“You can’t expect a charity to adapt in a week. Any solution would have had to have been a year or nine months ago at least.”
Last week Pines and Needles offered the Camden Society £30,000 over five years to support their bid and also made overtures to the Friends of Fortune Green group.
Pines and Needles founders Josh and Sam Lyle said: “Pines and Needles is very proud of its charity work over the years and strives to work together with local stakeholders.
“We are hopeful that they will reconsider their positions on what we feel is a positive example of business working together with local stakeholders to enrich and enhance the community.”
Camden Council’s communities chief Cllr Jonathan Simpson said: “Following conversation with the local community, after concerns were raised, it was jointly agreed with the company that they would not trade at this location in 2018.”