Residents are asked: "Should Saltaire's trees be cut down?"

The trees in question

The trees in question

First published in News Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , Aire/Worth Valley Reporter

Felling all the trees in Saltaire’s Victoria Road and leaving it bare as Sir Titus Salt intended was one of three suggestions unveiled to the public over the weekend.

Meetings in Victoria Hall and the Methodist Church at the World Heritage site were attended by some 150 residents, who gave mixed responses to the options on how a £700,000 facelift should proceed.

Bradford Council has earmarked the cash to upgrade the avenue which leads to Salts Mill, primarily to repair dangerously uneven pavements, but also to make the area more attractive to tourists. The options offered are:

* Remove all trees on Victoria Road, repair and restore pavements using the highest quality materials

*Remove trees and replace with smaller species including exotics wherever possible and repair pavements

* Or continue to manage existing trees and repair pavements Maureen Wood, 71, who lives at the top end of the road, which is dominated by large horsechestnuts and beeches, said she hoped they would all be swiftly removed. She said: “We have our lights on more in summer than winter because they make it so dark. It’s miserable and it costs a fortune. And tree roots have made the pavements deadly to walk on, they’re so uneven and then get slippy with wet leaves.”

Neighbour Olwen Jonathan, 38, agreed: “They are causing a lot of damage to the houses themselves. Would people prefer the trees or the historic houses?”

Cynthia Simpson, 72, has lived in the road for 22 years and said she also wanted the big, overhanging trees to go.

She said: “We’re not against trees, but the sap and conkers and everything means you are forever sweeping up.

“If they were small trees, it might be different.”

Husband and wife Anne and Roger Heald live at the Mill end of Victoria Road above the premises they ran as a gift shop and tourist centre until 2007 and said they enjoyed looking out at the lush green summer canopy.

Mr Heald said: “We do like the trees with all the birds and wildlife and watching them change through the seasons.

“It brings a flavour of the countryside into an industrial and residential area, although we know they have damaged the pavements further up.”

World Heritage Site officer Helen Thornton said the trees had only been planted in the 1950s and were not part of the original design of Saltaire.

She said: “Some want to end the darkness the trees cause in the houses, others love the ambience they bring to the area. These have been very positive meetings and we want to hear everyone’s views before decisions are taken,” she said.

Details and pictures of the scheme are on Bradford Council’s website at www.bradford.gov.uk/victoriaroadsaltaire

Comments (7)

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8:15am Mon 7 Apr 14

johnh1 says...

Is this some sort of joke.
I thought trees were protected.
They act as carbon sinks
They are sanctuaries for wildlife they provide colour
Unless they are a danger leave things alone.
Is this some sort of joke. I thought trees were protected. They act as carbon sinks They are sanctuaries for wildlife they provide colour Unless they are a danger leave things alone. johnh1
  • Score: -13

8:59am Mon 7 Apr 14

collos25 says...

It is clearly explained its the houses or the trees we have the same problem it is caused by planting the wrong type of trees but hindsight is a marvelous thing.
It is clearly explained its the houses or the trees we have the same problem it is caused by planting the wrong type of trees but hindsight is a marvelous thing. collos25
  • Score: 11

12:29pm Mon 7 Apr 14

The Hoffster says...

Residents are asked: "Should Saltaire's trees be cut down?"


Er, with a saw ?
[quote]Residents are asked: "Should Saltaire's trees be cut down?" [/quote] Er, with a saw ? The Hoffster
  • Score: -18

1:11pm Mon 7 Apr 14

Not so simple says...

Considering my council tax bill has increased and the council is supposed to be skint: why is £700000 being spent in saltaire an area which is already desirable and more exclusive: Bradford council is a joke. U allow the roads and roundabout to ripped up again and again causing much delays and pollution. Allow retail markets to be built along with housing on the outskirts near its neighbour with baildon. You have ruined this great area with council estates all over it! Stop meddling with our history
Considering my council tax bill has increased and the council is supposed to be skint: why is £700000 being spent in saltaire an area which is already desirable and more exclusive: Bradford council is a joke. U allow the roads and roundabout to ripped up again and again causing much delays and pollution. Allow retail markets to be built along with housing on the outskirts near its neighbour with baildon. You have ruined this great area with council estates all over it! Stop meddling with our history Not so simple
  • Score: 7

5:23pm Mon 7 Apr 14

bradmat says...

Cut down the trees and replace with smaller species of tree
Cut down the trees and replace with smaller species of tree bradmat
  • Score: 6

5:59pm Mon 7 Apr 14

Tonybaloni says...

Cut down all but one tree and hang all the councilors from it. All those who say I raise your hands. :)
Cut down all but one tree and hang all the councilors from it. All those who say I raise your hands. :) Tonybaloni
  • Score: -5

12:01am Tue 8 Apr 14

36a says...

As a tree lover, I was about to reply to this article that along with cutting down the trees, why not tarmac over Roberts park, and concrete over the flower beds.

Then I read the residents comments and can appreciate that some are now too big for their location, and that smaller specimens that are lower growing would be more appropriate

It is more about how the Council would handle it. If they just send in the contractors to rip up every tree, as I would expect them to, then forget to put new ones in, or more likely plant cheap very small trees that will become vandalised, or never maintained or nurtured, then it will be a complete mess.

This needs careful planning and a phased approach.

Good Luck Saltaire, You'll Need It
As a tree lover, I was about to reply to this article that along with cutting down the trees, why not tarmac over Roberts park, and concrete over the flower beds. Then I read the residents comments and can appreciate that some are now too big for their location, and that smaller specimens that are lower growing would be more appropriate It is more about how the Council would handle it. If they just send in the contractors to rip up every tree, as I would expect them to, then forget to put new ones in, or more likely plant cheap very small trees that will become vandalised, or never maintained or nurtured, then it will be a complete mess. This needs careful planning and a phased approach. Good Luck Saltaire, You'll Need It 36a
  • Score: 2

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