CAMAPIGNERS trying to save a 200-year-old tree from being cut down are this morning standing firm despite contractors arriving with chainsaws.

Staff at the Ecology Building Society, Silsden, have vowed to keep constant vigil beneath a massive lime tree which borders their property after contractors began hacking at its lower boughs this morning as part of work to build a new Aldi store.

They are desperately trying to persuade the supermarket company to stay the axe during ground clearance work prior to building on the Keighley Road site.

Yesterday staff were told that no action would be taken to bring the tree down until discussions had taken place between them and Aldi.

"I'm not budging," said ethics manager Anna Laycock.

"Workman began cutting at it after bosses told them to start bringing it down.

"But we've had no contact from Aldi so far about the unnecessary destruction of this wonderful tree which is home to so many living things" said Miss Laycock, sitting beneath its branches.

"We will take turns to stay here to try and save it while we negotiate," she said.

Bradford Council planners granted permission for the tree's removal as it was deemed necessary for Aldi's development of the site.

The company has yet to comment on the situation.