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Isle Of Wight Council Wins Court Case Against Men Who Chopped Down Protected Trees


14 May 2009 Last Updated on 15 July 2009 Adam Owen

Jez Abbott

Tree officers have underlined the threat of legal action for those who hack down protected trees following a successful prosecution in the Isle of Wight.  Isle of Wight Council took two men to court for chopping down two mature oaks and two mature macrocarpas in the ancient woodland at Shanklin.

Ronald Squire and Glen Bartlett admitted removing the trees protected by preservation orders. They were fined £500, £50 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.  Head of planning Bill Murphy said he hoped the case sent out the message that certain trees were given protection for good reason.  "The council will take whatever action it can when protected trees are damaged or removed," he said.

Council tree officer Jerry Willis said the trees were an important landscape feature and their loss reduced the ability for the woodland to regenerate.  "It also removes the amenity value that the trees offered the area. Their removal has affected a woodland inhabited by protected species like dormice, red squirrels, bats and nesting birds."