Application Details

Reference 20/03288/VP
Address Stoke Lodge Sports Ground Shirehampton Road Sea Mills Bristol  
Street View
Proposal Ash (T8 on plan, part of G7 on TPO 1192) Crown lift to 8m on the Pavilion side . Remove the basal shoot and any hanging branches or deadwood in the crown. Remove the three lowest limbs that overhang the footpath outside of the playing fields.
Validated 23-07-20
Type Tree Preservation Order
Status Decided
Determination Deadline 17-09-20
Decision GRANTED
Decision Issued 15-10-20
BCC Planning Portal BCC Planning Portal
Public Comments Supporters: 10 Objectors: 97  Unstated: 2  Total: 109
No. of Page Views 0
Comment analysis Map   Date of Submission
Nearby Trees Within 200m

BTF response: OBJECT

Recommendation submitted 31-07-20

We have now submitted our objections to this application. They can be read via this link: https://bristoltreeforum.files.wordpress.com/2020/07/planning-application-20-03288-vp-btf-comments.pdf

My first comment is that it is refreshing to see an Application for work to a TPO tree on Stoke Lodge Playing Field being submitted for public scrutiny.
I am alarmed to see that the Applicant declares that it already has an opinion that the work is reasonable and required from the authority to whom it has made this Application to carry out the work, and this prior to the Application being submitted for public scrutiny. What trust can we put in this process?
The residents of Bristol have for several years witnessed works to TPO trees on this site carried out without prior Application by this Applicant, even though UK Statute/Regulation says that no work to TPO trees, even (importantly) amongst the roots, shall be carried out without the consent granted following a successful Application. This is so that Conditions to any consent granted can be set, and there can then follow enforcement of those conditions if they are breached. This is true even when any tree works are being carried out under the terms of Permitted Development (PD), and the application of these rules is not discretionary.
Bristol City Council (BCC) for a while apparently did not require such an Application when tree works were being done under Permitted Development at this site, yet when BCC carries out tree work itself at this site it has always made an Application. Perhaps the other works were not PD associated?
Only following months of howls of protest from residents, insisting that BCC adhered to UK regulation, have we seen any such Applications required to be made by this Applicant for works on trees at this site, but even then, formal public applications for works to TPO trees have not always been required by the Planning Authority for this site by this Applicant.
This occasional change was too late to prevent the abuse of some of the trees, and the effects of concrete having been poured amongst the roots of several truly splendid precious trees, even a Veteran Oak, and the use of power tools amongst their roots, are yet to be seen. There has been a belief expressed that if a tree is damaged one day and does not fall over the next day, then no damage has been done. This is nonsense of course. Some recent infringements, highlighted by residents, are still under investigation.
This may seem a long-winded pre-amble, but the context for this Application needs to be set because the tree that is the subject of this Application has already been damaged twice, and by the same Applicant - and this is a matter of public record - apparently with the prior knowledge of departments within BCC who did not request a formal Application despite UK regulation.
The Ash tree in question has twice had to suffer excavation of its roots, close to its trunk, both using a mechanical digger. The second excavation was done in the same site despite the requirement to carry out remedial works following the first episode, which remedial works were required by BCC only following further howls of protest from residents, who were at first disbelieved until they produced video evidence of the event. Evidence of the second episode has been produced by protestors and there has been admonishment issued to the Applicant, again.
The Tree:
This is a mature Ash Tree protected by TPO No 1192. It does not have Ash die-back disease. Even if it did, the presence of that disease is not a reason to fell it unless it poses an immediate danger. Indeed, keeping affected trees is encouraged by the National bodies who know about such things, as some trees are naturally resistant, or may develop resistance having become infected.
"Crown lifting" sounds grand and beneficial, but is effectively a very heavy prune. Pruning a tree has more harmful consequences than beneficial ones, and should only be done when necessary and FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE TREE, and not for the benefit of someone, particularly for someone who does not own the tree. BCC owns the tree, which means that we, everyone in Bristol, own the tree.
The harmful effects of pruning are:
Increased pathogen and pest vulnerability, and increased likelihood of pathogen colonisation because of the open wounds - the cuts. (this in a time when Ash die back is in Bristol!).
Increased hydraulic stress.
Increased competition within the tree for carbon, which is needed anyway by the tree for growth, and, following pruning, will be needed for the healing of the cuts as well as for normal growth.
Reduced production of oxygen and reduced absorption of carbon dioxide because the crown reduction has reduced the number of leaves available for photosynthesis.
Reduced ecological diversity and reduced volume of habitat.
Reduced nutrients produced by the tree normally available for resorption and recycling, e.g. leaf debris.
All this in a time of a declared climate emergency, when we should be struggling our utmost to improve the environment, and certainly not harm it further.
The Applicant is a Secondary School - and no doubt Ecology and Environment are subjects in the curriculum.
A crown reduction of this magnitude - approximately 50% - could kill this tree on its own, let alone a tree that has had two recent insults to its roots. Cuts done inexpertly would kill the tree for sure.
In fact, the only time when pruning is beneficial to a tree is to remove structural defects within/of the tree. This does not mean that when a tree is encroaching upon an outside structure it should be pruned. Unfortunately, most pressure for the pruning of trees is to make trees fit in with the human environment, and this should not be done when it is harmful for the tree (which, as outlined above, is in many ways) in order to suit Man's whim.
This tree has already sustained damage to its roots twice. Some remedial work was done to the roots on 15th October 2019 to try to reduce the damage following the digging of a trench through its Root Protection Area with a mechanical digger. The soil was aerated and some mycorrhizal fungi spores applied next to the roots. But then the soil that had been treated in such manner was promptly dug up again, and further compacted, by a second episode of trenching with no Application, but it has been suggested that departments within BCC knew it was going to be carried out even with no Application, and did not request such an Application.
So, having already been attacked from below twice, now the proposal is to attack it from above by inflicting several wounds and reducing its leaf numbers, impacting upon its biological systems adversely and encouraging infections. Leading to a certain death?
Why?:
The Applicant states that there are fears that the tree might break or fall, or could be diseased, but it is not damaging property.
The Application is to remove all the lower lateral limbs originating below 8 metres.
Two of these limbs extend over a footpath to the back gardens of two neighbouring properties and thus away from the Applicant's leased area. Have these residents complained - I believe not? Is there a real expectation that these limbs will fail and fall? Maybe every tree in the country should have all its branches removed just in case they fall?
One of the branches rubs against the tower of a derelict pavilion. Is there evidence that this limb is failing and an expectation that it will fall?
Or is this Application in order to suit the Applicant because the School wants to develop the site by rebuilding the derelict pavilion? IF the derelict pavilion were rebuilt then there would be no need to put in place a structure which interfered with the tree!
Firstly there has been a suggestion that the funding to rebuild the pavilion may not be forthcoming, so it is incumbent upon the Planning Authority to make sure that the plans are firm and agreed with the funding Authority, and are not just an aspiration of the Applicant, as it would be a great shame to sacrifice an important publicly owned tree for a reason that then disappeared.
Secondly, it is possible with some imagination, and a conscience, to design a building that is close to a tree so that it "includes" the tree - take a look at the Visitor Centre at Clifton Suspension Bridge to see such an example in North Somerset.
So why damage an important tree to such an extent that it is likely to be doomed, to suit a building that might not happen, when the tree (one branch!) need not interfere with the building, were it to be built, anyway?
The TPO status:
One has to ask "What will happen to the form of this tree if it is "re-shaped" in this way"? It looks to me that it would be transformed into the shape of a ridiculous lollipop. Importantly it would no longer look in any way like a mature Ash tree.
The Tree Evaluation Method for Preservation Orders (TEMPO) is a scoring system for deciding whether a tree deserves/merits a TPO. Part of the scoring is an assessment as to whether the trees does or does not have remaining longevity, and has a good form. If this Ash tree undergoes this crown reduction it will no longer have the form of an Ash, and will have been further damaged (the two episodes of trenching amongst its roots being earlier episodes) likely to reduce its life span - i.e. its longevity. A crown reduction/lift of this magnitude is likely of itself to reduce its longevity.
Indeed a recent planning application (20/02457) to fell an Ash tree in a Conservation Area (Clifton, Bristol) was granted because the tree could not be "saved" in the only way possible under those circumstances, by being made the subject of a TPO, one of the reasons being because, and I quote "The tree has been heavily crown lifted in the past which detracts from the trees natural habit."
So, because of previous heavy crown lifting the form of that tree in Clifton had been spoiled, and it did not merit the granting of a TPO, and it is to be felled. There was early Ash die-back, but as said earlier, of itself that is not a reason to fell a tree. There has not been a suggestion that this Ash, the subject of the Application at Stoke Lodge, has Ash die-back.

The Ash tree which is the subject of this Application already has a TPO. If this work is carried out, and then there are further/future applications to do things to it (and who knows by whom and when?) then it has to merit its TPO status all over again - and may lose it because of its form following this crown lifting, were this to go ahead. If it loses its TPO status then, and by not being in a Conservation Area, there would be no need to make an application to do anything to it - it would lose all its current protection, and who can tell what might then happen to it? We could hazard a guess.

Please deny this Application. It is quite unnecessary to risk the future health of this already compromised tree. There is a strong possibility the Pavilion will not be rebuilt.

I suspect the reason, or at least another reason, for this Application is for CCTV observation of the whole site, as there was an earlier Application for similar works to this tree for just this purpose - 19/04039.
That Application is strangely no longer visible on the Planning Portal so I give the wording of it here from documents I saved:
"Ash (T8) Remove the lowest 6 branches on the south side of the tree and crown lift by removing secondary laterals to give a minimum clearance of 1.5m branches above to clear both the side and the top of tower to allow for the installation of CCTV cameras. TPO 1192".
That Application had nothing to do with the tree itself, and I strongly suspect that this Application hasn't either. What a sacrifice!

Public Comments

  OBJECT

2

Cotham School has expressed a wish to refurbish the pavilion, although it is not yet clear that

it will be able to do so. Nevertheless, it has recently felled and poisoned a number of trees

growing around the building. If this is intended to be part of preparatory work for some, as yet,

hypothetical future refurbishment, the application does not say so, nor does it justify why it is

necessary to do this work now.

We have measured the Ash tree’s diameter at breast height (DBH) at 77 cm. It was reported to

be 18 metres tall three years ago2 so it is likely to be taller now. We estimate that the tree is

probably about 100 years old3.

It is generally accepted that the radius of a tree’s root zone is 12 times its DBH4. On this basis

the radius of this tree’s root zone is at least 9.32 metres, which encompasses most of the tower

on the northern side of the pavilion, as can be seen in this Google Earth image from June 2017.

2 This figure and the tree’s stem diameter of 74 cm are taken from an extract of a Tree Management Schedule prepared by Bosky Trees dated 16th October 2019. These values and all the others given for tree T8 – the Ash, the subject of this application – are identical to the values given for the same tree by Bosky Trees in their reports of 12th September 2017, 14th November 2017, 11th June 2018 and 6th February 2019. It is likely that these dimensions are based on the original survey undertaken on 12th September 2017, nearly three years ago, and have not been changed since then. 3 See - https://bristoltrees.space/trees/age-estimation.xq?species=Ash&girth=&dbh=77 4 BS 5837:2012 - Trees in relation to design, demolition and construction – Recommendations Para 4.6.

3

Given its position – growing in a prominent, publicly accessible position, its condition and its

very high amenity value and using CAVAT - we estimate that the tree has a value of at least

£79,000. Further details of the tree may be viewed here: BCC-77039.

Description of Works

The applicant’s Description of Works states the following:

Ash (T8 on plan, part of G7 on TPO 1192) Small basal shoot that has been cut back in

the past. This is a large tree 5m away from the tower at the rear of the pavilion. One

small broken branch overhangs the footpath inside the playing fields. The lower limbs

on the site side overhang the roof of the building, one of these branches is rubbing

heavily against the building and would cause severe injury if it falls (a photo has been

submitted with this application to show this concern). Two long lower lateral limbs

extend over the footpath outside of the site and overhang neighbouring gardens.

Planned work is:

Crown lift by removing all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that

extend towards and above the building. Also remove the basal shoot and any hanging

branches or deadwood in the crown. Remove the three lowest limbs that overhang the

footpath outside of the playing fields.

The planned work has been discussed with an arboriculture expert (Bosky) and the

BCC Tree Officer and are considered reasonable and required. The works have been

permitted by BCC as landowner provided permission is granted via the normal planning

process.

Our response

1 No reason given for why these works are proposed

The only reason given for proposing these works is the statement that ‘one of these branches

is rubbing heavily against the building and would cause severe injury if it falls’. However, no

evidence is offered to suggest that the rubbing limb presents an imminent health and safety

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risk or that, if it does fall, it will cause anyone injury. There is no evidence to suggest that the

tree is diseased or that it presents an imminent risk to public safety.

No reason or evidence is presented for why it is necessary to remove ‘Two long lower lateral

limbs extend over the footpath outside of the site and overhang neighbouring gardens.’ There

is no evidence to suggest that the owners of the neighbouring gardens have requested this or

that the limbs present any health and safety risk to the public.

We do note that the applicant has said nothing about any plans to refurbish the pavilion, even

though preparatory work seems already to have begun. The decision on whether to grant the

application can be made only on the basis of the evidence submitted.

Here is a generated image of the tree created using Google Earth. It is a lateral view of it,

taken from the south looking across the pavilion.

5

We understand that the trees growing between the Ash and the pavilion have now been felled

and their stumps poisoned by the applicant5.

2 The negative impact on the tree

The top of the tower seen in front of the tree is 7.09 metres high. It is planned to remove all

the limbs (called ‘Crown Lift’) and other growth on the south side of the tree up to 8 metres

above the ground – nearly 1 metre higher than the tower. Lateral branches growing over the

path running between the applicant’s fence and the boundary wall (in which the tree is

growing) will also be removed, as well as those which overhang nearby gardens. By our

reckoning, this will amount to at least half the volume of the tree being removed.

Below is an artist’s impression of how the tree looks now and how it might look if this application

is allowed. It is, of course, difficult to give a true impression of how this tree might look after

pruning and this viewpoint is one-dimensional, being made from the southerly aspect looking over

the pavilion and against the background of the trees that grow around it. It is also likely that not

all the limbs on the southern side and originating less than 8 metres above the ground have been

removed from this scenario, so the effect could be even more severe than this.

5 Because they are not protected by a TPO, there is no protection for trees such as these and the applicant is at liberty to remove them and poison their stumps at will.

6

This tree has recently been a victim of two recent insults to its welfare brought about by the

actions of the applicant when they had trenches dug through its root zone, causing damage to

its roots and compacting the soil in which they are growing6. It will probably take years before

any long-term damage caused by these incidents becomes evident, but, in any event, the tree

has sustained an immediate, significant injury from which, it is hoped, it is still recovering.

To remove the best part of half of the tree now is likely to prove fatal. Even if this does not

happen, cutting off multiple significant branches from ground level to 8 metres high and other

branches in addition to this is likely to unbalance the tree and so affect its stability. In addition,

substantial cuts such as this are likely to be the sites of fungal infection such as shaggy bracket

(Inonotus hispidus) which is common in Ash. It will also significantly reduce its amenity value

by seriously damaging its prospect, appearance, form and other aesthetic qualities, no doubt

some of the very reasons why the tree was granted a TPO in the first place.

3 The negative impact on the ecology of the area

Cotham School's own ecology report of July 2018 notes that there is moderate to high potential

for foraging and commuting bats in this area and the tree may also have shallow holes, crevices

and dense growths of ivy that could be used by roosting bats. Several species of bat (including

common and soprano pipistrelle, noctule and Leisler's bats) are regularly seen flying in and out

of trees in this area. Since bats are a protected species, we have a duty to ensure that their

habitat should not be disturbed without good reason. It is also likely that other species use the

tree for nesting, shelter, foraging and commuting.

4 The negative aesthetic impact

Neither can the context in which this Ash is growing be ignored. This tree is an important part

of a long-standing, diverse community of trees growing within the mosaic of an almost

contiguous boundary, a key part of an important historic setting. As can be seen from the images

6 Both matters have been the subject of planning enforcement proceedings - 19/30381/TPO and 20/30195/TPO.

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in this document, this Ash helps to soften the impact of what is otherwise a rather ugly

structure.

Conclusion

We accept that something needs to be done to protect the limb which is rubbing against the

nearby building. If there are dead limbs which present an imminent public health and safety

hazard, then they too should be managed, but this is all. The presence of dead limbs in a tree

creates habitat and promotes species biodiversity, so they should not be removed for any other

reason, such as convenience or an urge to ‘tidy’.

This application is not ‘management' activity being undertaken for the benefit of a protected

tree. It appears to be made by the applicant for their convenience and, on the face of it, on a

whim. All decisions about the management of all the trees on this site remain vested with the

Council and it is the Council alone, not the applicant, that decides what is required for their

long-term welfare or to protect the public. The Council cannot abdicate its responsibilities

merely to satisfy the wishes of the applicant.

We also note the applicant’s statement that ‘The planned work has been discussed with…the

BCC Tree Officer and are considered reasonable and required.’

If this is indeed the case, then all those Council officers involved in these discussions must

recuse themselves from the decision-making process on the grounds that they have prejudged

the matter. The purpose of a planning application is to provide an opportunity for a proper

consultation and then to make the decision on only the information that is provided (including

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this submission). If the decision has already been taken in advance of the application being

made then, quite clearly, a proper consultation has not occurred.

In all the circumstances and to avoid any appearance of bias, this matter should be remitted

to a planning committee for a decision.

Finally, the applicant has produced an extract of a Tree Management Schedule prepared by

Bosky Trees dated 16th October 2019. The full report must be produced so that we can

understand its context.

If the true reason for this application is to facilitate the applicant’s plans to refurbish the

pavilion, they should say so and disclose full details of what is planned so that proper

consideration can be given to their plans and their likely impact on this application.

Bristol Tree Forum

July 2020

on 2020-10-07   OBJECT

Before accepting the recommendation that this application should be approved, pleasecan I simply ask that Councillors remember to abide by their own Tree Management Policy? WhilstI understand that any branches of this 'fine, healthy, mature' protected Ash tree which touch thepavilion tower may be pruned or removed, I wish to highlight that this applies to only ONE branch,which I concur c/should be removed (even though it isn't damaging the building i.e. causing anyactual 'nuisance' at this time). The photo (image 4) is highly misleading in that it doesn't show theseverity of the proposed work, bearing in mind that the tower is just over 7m tall. As originallyindicated by the Tree Officers, whose advice appears to have been somehow twisted to theadvantage of the applicant, the proposal to crown-lift to 8m is excessive and something I believethe tree would not recover from.

on 2020-10-07   OBJECT

I object.

This application is to remove all branches originating below 8m on the pavilion side of the tree.The officers report does not focus on this and refers to it as minor pruning noting it will onlyremove weighted branches from the lower canopy, which considering the large size of the wholecanopy will constitute less than 15% of the trees canopy.

This is simply inaccurate. A mistake has been made by the Officer which, if the committee ratify it,could lead to grounds for judicial review.

This application is to remove ALL BRANCHES below 8m on the pavilion side. Not the weightedbranches, all branches. Not just 15%, but everything below 8m.

This is a mature healthy tree with one and only one branch rubbing against the building, which isnoted in the application. For this transgression by the tree the applicant intends to massivelydamage the tree for decades to come.

The council needs to stick to its principals and make a decision based on the facts and not basedon error and poor judgement, which will be open to review.

on 2020-10-06   SUPPORT

The playing fields are a great facility for local football teams. It's important that theowners can maintain the grounds and buildings. This proposal seems very reasonable to me.

on 2020-09-25   OBJECT

I coach kids rugby and i have for the last ten years. I support the view wholeheartedleythat children deserve a warm safe place to change for sports and comfort breaks - it's a basicrequirement. The arguments to develop the pavilion are solid and shared amongst a lot of people Iknow. I'd expect that for my own kids, volunteer coaches, any other kids and parents keeping theirkids health priority and getting them fresh air and fit, especially now with the pandemic.

Bristol City Council POLICY is not to cut TPO trees unless they are damaging buildings and theapplication says that this tree isn't . It's NOT allowed to clear trees for building works or the vieweither.

It's a fact that Cotham don't have consent to use funds for this. The pavilion isn't even part of theTVG application precisely so that it could be fixed but rather than claim insurance and sort it outfor their pupils and others, Cotham school have left it decrepit and riddled with asbestos for nineyears. They have made a mistake and this isn't the way to fix it.Why chop into a protected tree on the off chance that at some point in the future someone mightwant to build near it?I expect the council officer to do his job and judge this application on the relevant points, ratherthan from opinions from random names (and potentially don't exist and who can't be bothered tomake their own statements) who want a pavilion there.

on 2020-09-25   OBJECT

I am somewhat confused by some of the comments made in support of the applicationas they seem to be supporting the erection of a new pavilion and/or access for a security camerawhereas I thought that the application was in connection with some tree works.

The reason for the application is supposedly due to the condition of the tree where the applicationstates that there is one small broken branch which overhangs the footpath inside the playing fieldsand that one of the branches that overhangs the roof of the building is rubbing heavily against thebuilding and would cause severe injury if it falls.

The branch rubbing against the building appears to be rubbing against the brick structure on top ofthe pavilion. Since the pavilion itself is derelict, surely the answer is to demolish the brick structureand save the tree from further damage, especially as the pavilion itself may be rebuilt at somefuture date, rather than substantially affect the structure of a valuable tree. Bearing in mind BristolCity Council's announcement yesterday of its plans to "protect natural life" in and around Bristolafter the city declared an "ecological emergency" earlier this year and that our Mayor Marvin Reeshas said that this was Bristol's "opportunity to come together and take positive action for nature",any tree works of the type proposed would seem to run counter to these plans.

In conclusion, I think that the Bristol Tree Forum have made a convincing case for the preservationand long term health of this tree and nothing that I have seen in support of the application seemsto have any relevance to the reasons given for the application.

on 2020-09-25   OBJECT

There are many valid and relevant objections to the work being done on this tree, itdoes not fall within guidelines; that is clear to those who take the trouble to research it properly.

The comments in support rely on the fact that there will be a pavilion built or refurbished which MsBeeston herself points out at the beginning of her statement is only a hope.

We know that Cotham School do not have consent to use grant funding for this project and,importantly, the application papers don't refer to it at all. The officers should be, and I'm sure willbe judging the application itself, not irrelevant statements about people wanting a pavilion there:that is nothing to do with the application that has been submitted.

It is not BCC policy and not arboriculturally best practise to chop a protected tree into an unnaturaland visually unattractive shape on the off chance that at some future point someone might dosome building work: BCC policy is not to cut back TPO trees unless they are damaging buildingsand the application specifically says that is not happening. Nor does BCC policy require them toclear trees out of the way for building works, or to improve a view, not for people, and certainly notfor CCTV which, arguably, has no place there anyway.

I'd like to add here that I take exception to Ms Beeston trying to subvert the system by including along list of names when there is no evidence that these people exist let alone support herstatement. They haven't complied with the rules on disclosing addresses nor have they beenbothered to make their own statements.

on 2020-09-24   SUPPORT

Much needed community resource for School Children to improve sporting experienceand therefore longer term fitness, health and wellbeing of a younger generation.

on 2020-09-22   SUPPORT

I fully support the work. The grounds are fantastic place for the school and local groupsto practise sport and outdoor activities. Having a working changing room would greatly enhancethe playing fields.I help coach Cotham Tigers who play football there on a Saturday. We have a large group of boysand girls from all around Bristol who benefit tremendously from being able to use the grounds atStoke Lodge. It can get cold and wet over the winter months though and having an on sitechanging rooms would really help us especially with some of the younger children who suffer themost when the weather conditions deteriorate.

on 2020-09-22   SUPPORT

I fully support the work. The grounds are fantastic place for the school and local groupsto practise sport and outdoor activities. I believe this is especially important at the moment withCOVID-19 impacting upon everyone's mental health.

Protecting the changing rooms now will minimise future work, reduce the costs of maintaining thePavilion and would ensure that the playing fields have the right facilities to support the sports andother activities that they host.

I help coach Cotham Tigers Football Club, who play there on a Saturday morning. We have alarge group of boys and girls of primary school age from all around Bristol who benefittremendously from being able to use the grounds at Stoke Lodge. It can get cold and wet over thewinter months though and having on-site changing facilities would really help us especially withsome of the younger children who may suffer the most when the weather deteriorates.

on 2020-09-18   OBJECT

I'd like to point out that the comment by Ms Penny Beeston of 31 Cotham Park , postedon 17th Sept is the same text as the one posted under the name Parent and Carer Representativeon the same day. Therefore perhaps one or the other of these comments should be withdrawn asthey are duplicates?

on 2020-09-17   OBJECT

This Tree has a TPO on it . I agree with the advice recommended by the Bristol TreeForum and Local Tree Champion .This tree currently does not affect the use of the field by users .

Im amazed a Green Party Councillor C.Lake (the deputy of the Party in fact ) is in support of thissuggesting the TPO tree should be cut to the bone .Is she confused what party she is in?Once you start cutting TPO's where does it stop!That's why you have TPO's ????

on 2020-09-17   SUPPORT

On behalf of 175 Cotham School Parents, Carers, Supporters and Students (see names at end ofdocument):

We fully support Cotham School in this application for the following reasons:

1) We are hopeful that our school's pavilion will be refurbished in the near future. The ash tree isencroaching on the tower of the building. Relevant branches should be removed under BCC'sTree Management Policy that states:

'If a council owned tree is touching a property (house, boundary wall, garage etc.) we will takeaction to remove the problem.'

Cotham School students currently have no shelter and changing facilities at their own schoolplaying field. BCC has a responsibility to ensure Cotham has 'quiet enjoyment' of this facility whichshould include enabling the refurbishment of the pavilion by clearing vegetation. A refurbishedpavilion will be an asset not just for the school but also for other sports clubs which use and couldmake use of the playing fields.

2) We have previously notified BCC that this ash tree has damaged branches and that itrepresents a risk to passersby. A large branch recently fell from an oak tree on the Cheyne Roadboundary, following a storm after a long dry spell. Thankfully no one was hurt and there was noother damage, but the threat to public safety is genuine, and as the application notes this ash

tree's three lowest limbs overhang the footpath, so it seems both reasonable and indeednecessary to remove these if the school continues to permit public access on this section of theperimeter path.

3) We understand that the crown lift to the tree was suggested by the BCC Tree Officer indiscussion with arboricultural experts Bosky Trees. We respect the expertise of these parties tomake a fair and reasonable assessment of the work to be carried out, considering this is a schoolpremises and tree protection must be balanced with users' safety and a pragmatic and costeffective solution that avoids the need for repeat pruning in the near future.

4) There has been well documented repeated vandalism, arson, flyposting as well as breaches ofthe permitted public use of the fields by dog walkers.The ash tree is obscuring the CCTV on thetower so it should be cleared for line of sight. BCC gave permission for UWE to manage trees onits Glenside campus to do the same. We believe that Avon and Somerset Police support theschool's desire for comprehensive CCTV coverage of the field.

5) BCC recently granted permission for management of TPO maples on the playing field that alocal applicant felt were overhanging their property on Stoke Paddock Road to an unreasonableextent:

20/02228/VP | Norway Maple "Crimson King" (NW1) Norway Maple (NW2) -light crown-lift andreduction (2m maximum) of the NE lower face of crown. TPO 1192. | Stoke Lodge Sports GroundShirehampton Road Sea Mills Bristol

This case is altogether more pressing and affects the safety of the school's students and staff aswell as passersby.

6) We welcome the clearing of vegetation to reveal the pavilion. Stoke Bishop has an enormousvariety of architectural styles, so this building in its refurbished state will not be out of place.Currently it is graffitied and partially burnt and the refurbishment will enable it to become an assetrather than an eyesore.

7) As the exclusive leaseholder at the playing field, Cotham School has proved itself a highlyresponsible tenant in terms of tree management, as is evidenced by:

a) BCC Freedom of Information request ref 3915941 revealing a letter 01 April 2019 from BCC'sGrowth and Generation department to Cllr John Goulandris, detailing regular collaborationbetween the Council Arboricultural Officer and Cotham School re Fence Works includingconsidering 'how each revision of the line of the fence would impact (if at all) any protected tree,and throughout the erection of the fence on a post by post basis, with particular regard to tree rootsystems'.

b) A complaint made to the Local Government Ombudsman ref 19 000 400 against Bristol CityCouncil was not upheld on any grounds that related to Cotham School erecting the perimeterfence, but in fact the LGO decision 6 Feb 20220 revealed 'The Council confirmed it was satisfiedthe works completed so far had not damaged any of the protected trees' and that there had beenregular collaboration and communication with Cotham School, BCC Tree Officers and third partyarboriculturists to ensure minimum impact on trees.

c) BCC FOIhttps://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/request_for_documents_relating_t_4#incoming-1630106 The released documents reinforce the close working relationship between the school andBCC Tree Officers. The tree root that Bristol Tree Forum claimed was severed in a trench behindthe pavilion August 2019 was shown not to exist when the trench was carefully excavated.Indeed the FOI request revealed that BCC IT services dug the trench and it was Cotham Schoolitself that urged caution near TPO trees.

d) It was Cotham School who alerted BCC to the potentially dangerous oak at the Cheyne Rd endof the playing field, and contacted BCC when it was storm damaged. Although BCC holdsresponsibility for the management of the trees on site, clause 3.7.2 of the lease states thefollowing statutory obligation:'As soon as reasonably practicable to give written notice to the Landlord of anything arising orbeing in the Property which may endanger or adversely affect health or safety and which may giverise to a duty of care imposed by common law or statute on the Landlord in favour of the Tenant orany other person;'Management of this tree seems to fall partly under that category, and the school has indeedalerted the Landlord, who now has a responsibility to act.

8) All of this contradicts allegations made against Cotham School's treatment of the TPO'ed treeson the playing field which appear to have raised unwarranted fears about the future of the treesamong residents and seem to inform many of their objections to this application. We willseparately provide copies of some of the misleading material to the case officer by email.

Confirmed supporters of this statement:

A.J. Hardy Freddie Aitken Matthew Aitken Salvador FerreiraAbigail Bond Frederico Ferreira Max Briggs Sam SwayneAlex Briggs Gabriel Evans Maya Swayne Sandra DownAlex Craig Garry Quayle Michael Johnston Sara DaviesAlfie Blackmore Gemma McCann Michelle Ioele Sarah ChopeAli Poynter Greg Newman Mike White Scarlett BeestonAlice Payne Hal White Milo Bullock Sean SpicerAmanda Hall Hamish Beeston Mimi Bonomini Seth BullockAmia Backwell Harry Allbless Roberts Misha Evans Shabaz Osman-Pursey

Amy Kinnear Harry Pheasant Morgan Hardy Shaofu HuangAndrew Grant Helen Beales Nafaa Hammadi Sharon KellettAndrew Kinnear Henrietta Wilson Niamh Cary Mckeown Sharon LambertAndrew Smith Holly Tomkins Nicci Quayle Simon MacdonnellAndrew Spicer Ilin Chou Nick St Paul Sophie HamiltonAndy Beales Isadora Morgan Nicky Hodges Stefan IoeleAndy Craig Isla Crocker Nicola Bowtell Stuart SmithAndy Gibbins Isobel Jackson Nicola Dun Tiffany PurseyAndy Waterman Jackie Hill Nicola Keller Toby KellettAnita Craig Jacqui Shepcott Nikki Trott Wayne ForderAnna Bonnaddio James Town Noah Poynter Wendy ThomasAnthony Dunn Jamie Pheasant Nye Harries Wendy YeoAva Scott Jane Manley Jackson Oliver Lambert William St PaulBarbara Cook Jasmin Bragonier Olly Swayne Zach BatesBea Bonaddio Jim George Grant Orla Bates Zachary PoynterBlanche Beeston Joe Thurkettle Otto George Grant Zia KupyerCate Robins Joel Williams Paul BowtellCathy Renwick John White Paula BradshawCatrin Macdonnell Jordan Dun Penny BeestonCharles Lambert Joyce Woolridge Pete WilliamsCharlie Backwell Karen George Peter ParkerCheri Boucher Kate Blackmore Rachael DaveyChristine Ansell Kate Taylor Rachael JenningsClare Swayne Katherine Clune Rachel AllblessColin McFarlane Kathryn Furber Rachel CrockerDaisy Beales Katie Hughes Rachel Drummond-HayDaisy St Paul Kez Briggs Rachel MarcusDavid Parsons Kirk Hamilton Ramzey Boukhedenna-DownDavid Spilling Kirsty Bennett Reuben BowtellDonna Jauncy Laszlo Brennan Rich RickettsEd Bullock Lesley Sutton Rob CurtisEden Parsons Lisa Aitken Rob MannsEdie Blackmore Lola Hamilton Rosa EvansElla Pheasant Luke Brennan Rowan Shepcott-MannsElliott Kellett Lyra Hardy Rupert BatesEmily Aitken Maria Inês Marques Sadie CampbellEmily Shields Maria Jenkins Sadie NewmanEmma Gibbins Mark Smalley Sadie PoynterEsmé Williams Mark Thurkettle Saffia Osman-PurseyEva Brennan Marley Backwell Sally PetersFiona Newman Massimo Bonnadio Sally Pheasant

on 2020-09-17   OBJECT

I read Councillor Peter Abraham's question to the Mayor ahead of Full Council (Tuesday, 8September), and the Mayor's response, after I submitted my objection to this application on 4September. I would therefore like to add a supplementary comment.Councillor Abraham's question and the Mayor's reply were as follows:

Subject: BRISTOL'S TREE CANOPYThe benefits of trees are well known; they promote mental wellbeing, are visually attractive andhelp the ambition of cleaner air in our city. As I am sure the Mayor will agree they are hugelyimportant environmentally. Planting more trees will help, but protecting our existing trees,especially trees with Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) is paramount.1. Whilst the Mayor has no direct responsibility for planning matters, are you willing to make ashort policy statement endorsing the importance of trees to Bristol, which would be influential tothe city planners when considering applications to fell trees and/or agree invasive tree works,especially trees with TPOs?2. How many net additional trees does the Mayor expect to see in Bristol by 2030?

REPLY:1. Yes, more than happy to restate my endorsement for increasing the number of trees in the city.More importantly than that, we've built it into the city plan, built around a city vision, contributed byuniversities, business, voluntary sector, faith organisations and unions.That's a public statement of the tree canopy, give us more impetus than the planning function of alocal authority alone.

2. It is estimated that we have some 600,000 trees in Bristol, making up about 12.6% of the city'sland area. In order to double the city's tree canopy cover, taking it from 12.6% to 25.2%,depending on different planting scenarios, we are going to need between 138,600 and 277,200new trees planted in Bristol.This is the commitment that has been made in the City Plan. We are working with City Partners toachieve this.

The anger and disbelief in the numerous, cogent objections to this proposal show how much thecommunity cares about the preservation of this important tree, and its value to the amenity ofStoke Lodge's historic setting. We are grateful that Councillor Abraham's question highlights theimportance and benefits of all Bristol's trees, including existing trees and those with TPOs like thisone. We agree that protecting them is paramount.

I share Councillor Abraham's hope that Bristol's planners (and very experienced Tree Officers) willfeel empowered by the Mayor's endorsement of Cllr Abraham's reminder of our trees' essentialrole in making Bristol a healthy, attractive city to live in. We hope they will be encouraged touphold vital TPOs on such important trees as this ash. The Mayor's positive restatement of thecommitment to plant between 138,600 and 277,200 new trees in Bristol is a hugely ambitious andelusive target. Without conserving existing mature, broadleaved trees (like this Stoke Lodge ash,but including many, many other mature trees all over Bristol) as a priority, clean air targets, livesand lungs saved are very unlikely to be achieved soon, if at all. To have a hope, we need everymature tree that can possibly be saved to be prioritised.

Bristol's Tree Officers and experts will be well aware that no single tree, or even numeroussaplings, can fill the space or all the roles a tree like this ash occupies. In relation to canopy,climate, flooding, gaseous exchange, cleaner air, ecology, species diversity, habitat andappearance, its hundred year contribution will not even begin to be matched till after manydecades, and never completely. A tit-for-tat substitution, by however many saplings, for anestablished, hundred-year-old ash, that has perfectly evolved to Into its position in an ecosystemthat it has shaped and been shaped by, is impossible. In fact, I believe Bristol's tree officers canonly support the Mayor's declared commitment to doubling Bristol's tree canopy, for the health andhappiness of future generations, by rejecting this application - and others like it - that is part of aprogressive attempt to dismantle, devalue and ultimately destroy a protected tree.

When I submitted my previous comment, I was unaware that Cotham School had requested atleast one quote for the erection of scaffolding around the pavilion they intend to refurbish, althoughthere is no funding In place, so no certainty about when or if any refurbishment will be possible. Itseems extraordinary to even contemplate breaching a TPO by mutilating a valuable, mature,publicly owned tree, just to put up temporary scaffolding to facilitate a refurbishment that mightnever happen. (In view also of the active TVG registration proceedings, it is worth noting that theschool has repeatedly said it will leave Stoke Lodge, should TVG status be awarded). In any case,the school has not admitted scaffolding as a reason for the application. Nor did it mention the ash

tree's TPO to the scaffolding contractors, who were apparently unaware of it.

I have seen that in the very few comments in support of this application there is still not one validreason given for the work proposed. In common with the application form, there is not a singletenable justification offered for carrying out this level of brutal, life-limiting work on a TPOd tree.The applicant and the small number of supporters seem not to grasp that any work on thisprotected tree has to be for its benefit, or to address an immediate danger to the public, andshould be the bare minimum necessary if either of those priorities applies. Apart from the rubbingbranch, which could perhaps be considered relevant to the tree's longterm well being and might becorrected by protecting the branch itself or, if unavoidable, by the minimum localised pruning,those conditions are not met. The application's proposals are disproportionate and reckless,showing no respect or consideration for the tree's chances of continued health or even its survival.It is regrettable but verifiable that the proposals are consistent with the school's lack of concern forthe ecology of Stoke Lodge and their impact on the wider environment.

I hope this application will be recognised by you for what it clearly is: part of a traceable pattern ofdeliberate, repeated assaults on this tree that is simply, in the school's eyes, in their way. Therecent, unannounced, confusing change of name and postcode attached to Stoke Lodge PlayingField, aka Stoke Lodge Sports Ground, means it is now difficult to trace the school's recordrelating to Stoke Lodge. Its infringements and planning enforcements in relation to protected trees,and its rejected planning applications and appeal in relation to the pavilion, have been masked bythe change. This trail of confusion, or obfuscation, has been much better tracked by anothercommenter. It is worth emphasising, because these records reveal the school's motivation, which Ihope will influence your decision on this application.

I ask you to reject the application for the additional reasons given here, as well as those in myoriginal objection.

on 2020-09-17   OBJECT

This tree is part of a bat corridor enabling various bats to navigate the Stoke Lodge areain a safe manner. This tree is healthy and not damaging any structure.

To conduct the works that the applicant is suggesting will cause significant damage and stress tothe tree and make it look very un-natural in it's setting.

I believe the application is merely to provide greater scope of view for CCTV (which was put upwithout planning permission) for the lease holder. Interesting that their lease doesn't cover themaintenance of the trees, so why are they concerned about this one and making this application?

I strongly object to this application.

on 2020-09-17   OBJECT

I would like to add a response to a comment recently added in support of 20/03288/VPby a resident of 31 Cotham Park Bristol.

At the end of their comment they have included the names of well over a hundred so-say"confirmed supporters" of their statement.

There is nothing to indicate who any of these people are, nor what their exact commenter statusmight be - nor indeed whether any of them exist at all. No addresses are supplied.

Are these supposed to be Neighbours, Residents, Amenity-Residents Group, ConservationAdvisory Panel Members, Councillors, or simply 'Others' ? And how on earth is anyone supposedto know that each and every one of them really does support all the views of that one commenterwho is acting as their self-appointed proxy ?

The guidelines for making comments on planning applications on this portal indicate that membersof the public are not allowed to submit anonymous comments. Surely the same sanction mustapply to undocumented testimonials of this type as well ?

If officers are going to allow submissions of this type, then anyone could simply copy and pasterandom selections of names from a public telephone directory, and then falsely claim that theseare also "confirmed' supporters" of their statement as well.

on 2020-09-17   SUPPORT

This facility is used by many local clubs, including my sons football team, and schools. itis in serious need of upgrade however.

on 2020-09-17   SUPPORT

5) BCC recently granted permission for management of TPO maples on the playing field that a local applicant felt were overhanging their property on Stoke Paddock Road to an unreasonable extent:

20/02228/VP | Norway Maple "Crimson King" (NW1) Norway Maple (NW2) -light crown-lift and reduction (2m maximum) of the NE lower face of crown. TPO 1192. | Stoke Lodge Sports Ground Shirehampton Road Sea Mills Bristol.

This case is altogether more pressing and affects the safety of the school’s students and staff as well as passersby.

6) We welcome the clearing of vegetation to reveal the pavilion. Stoke Bishop has an enormous

variety of architectural styles, so this building in its refurbished state will not be out of place. Currently it is graffitied and partially burnt and the refurbishment will enable it to become an asset rather than an eyesore.

7) As the exclusive leaseholder at the playing field, Cotham School has proved itself a highly

responsible tenant in terms of tree management, as is evidenced by:

a) BCC Freedom of Information request ref 3915941 revealing a letter 01 April 2019 from BCC’s Growth and Generation department to Cllr John Goulandris, detailing regular collaboration between the Council Arboricultural Officer and Cotham School re Fence Works including considering ‘how each revision of the line of the fence would impact (if at all) any protected tree, and throughout the erection of the fence on a post by post basis, with particular regard to tree root systems’.

b) A complaint made to the Local Government Ombudsman ref 19 000 400 against

Bristol City Council was not upheld on any grounds that related to Cotham School erecting the perimeter fence, but in fact the LGO decision 6 Feb 20220 revealed​ ‘The Council confirmed it was satisfied the works completed so far had not damaged any of the protected trees’ and that there had been regular collaboration and communication with Cotham School, BCC Tree Officers and third party arboriculturists to ensure minimum impact on trees.

c) BCC FOI

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/request_for_documents_relating_t_4#incoming-1630106​ The released documents reinforce the close working relationship between the school and BCC Tree Officers. The tree root that Bristol Tree Forum claimed was severed in a trench behind the pavilion August 2019 was shown not to exist when the trench was carefully excavated. Indeed the FOI request revealed that BCC IT services dug the trench and it was Cotham School itself that urged caution near TPO trees.

2

d) It was Cotham School who alerted BCC to the potentially dangerous oak at the Cheyne Rd end of the playing field, and contacted BCC when it was storm damaged. Although BCC holds responsibility for the management of the trees on site, clause 3.7.2 of the lease states the following statutory obligation:

‘As soon as reasonably practicable to give written notice to the Landlord of anything arising or being in the Property which may endanger or adversely affect health or safety and which may give rise to a duty of care imposed by common law or statute on the Landlord in favour of the Tenant or any other person;’

Management of this tree seems to fall partly under that category, and the school has indeed alerted the Landlord, who now has a responsibility to act.

8) All of this contradicts allegations made against Cotham School’s treatment of the TPO’ed trees on the playing field which appear to have raised unwarranted fears about the future of the trees among residents and seem to inform many of their objections to this application. We include some of the misleading material, plus the names of the people who support this letter, below.

3

List of 175 people who have confirmed their support for this letter:

4

Examples of misleading information about trees and management at Stoke Lodge:

5

6

7

8

on 2020-09-17   OBJECT

Dear Tom Luck,

Planning Application 20/03288/VP

As a neighbour whose home is less than 250 yards from Stoke Lodge Playing Fields, my daily life is negatively impacted by Cotham School's actions and attitudes towards the local community. So I submit public comments on, and regularly monitor the progress of, relevant planning applications.

Some aspects of the current application 20/03288/VP have raised questions in my mind about the planning process, on which I would very much appreciate your advice.

(1) Is it not a requirement of a valid application for works on a TPO tree that the section on ownership of the tree is fully completed?

On the form shown on the Planning Portal with reference 20/03288/VP, all but one of the sections under '6. Tree Ownership' are left blank. Those who are familiar with Bristol and Stoke Lodge are fully aware that the tree is owned by Bristol City Council and that City Hall is part of the council's address. But given that the document is part of an official national record, is it acceptable that such important and relevant information is not specifically stated?

(2) Are duplicate submissions of comments noted and removed?

The list of comments on this application currently includes two supporting statements

(numbers 2720034 and 2720035) submitted by Mr Richard Lang of 44 Druid Hill on September 1st which are both exactly the same.

(3) Is a comment acceptable when presented as a quasi-petition by listing names (but not verifiable addresses) of numerous alleged supporters?

Comment number 2732245 on this application, submitted by Mrs Penny Beeston on September 17th, purports to represent the views of '175 Cotham School Parents, Carers, Supporters and Students', which seems to contravene the requirements stated online under 'How to comment on a planning application' in two specific ways:

(3) 1. 'What to include in your comment: your name and address'Although Mrs Beeston's name and address is published, no addresses are given with the 175 names she lists. Her 'comment' is presented as a quasi-petition, on which the identities of the quasi-signatories whose names she lists are unverifiable.

(3) 2. 'Comments we won't accept: We won't take your comment into consideration or publish it if the comment is anonymous'Although the names of 175 alleged supporters are given, without verifiable addresses they are effectively 'anonymous'.

(4) Will the amended plans referred to in the letter from Development Management to Nathan Allen dated September 17th confirming agreement to extend the time period for making a decision on this application be published on the website with full opportunity for the public to make comments?

This concern has arisen from the section of the letter to Mr Allen describing the agreement, which indicates that he may communicate his revised plans directly to you by email, and adds "Please do not use the Planning Portal to send any further or amended plans and documents."

Sincerely,Shirley Brown

on 2020-09-16   SUPPORT

I support the necessary pruning back of branches that may cause a danger and thatencroach on the pavilion which desperately needs to be restored so that hundreds of students atCotham School (and others) may have adequate changing facilities and provision to best enjoyoutside space and sports which is in my view absolutely essential for ongoing wellbeing.

on 2020-09-16   OBJECT

I wish to object to the planning application 20/03288/VP from Cotham School, toseverely cut back a significant number of branches from the Ash tree situated near to the pavilion,which has a tree preservation order on it.

This requested cut back is totally unnecessary for the purpose stated, but also impacts CCTVmonitoring around the gate area, and neighbouring homes.

I agree with all that has been said by the Bristol Tree Forum regarding the tree itself, and amconcerned that once the natural barrier of branches has been cut back, the CCTV will be able toview into neighbouring homes. This natural barrier has been in place for a significant number ofyears.

This tree must be treated in the same way as other healthy TPO trees, without a one off exceptionbeing made.

Please consider the impact this application will have on the view of the pavilion and the homesaround the area.

on 2020-09-16   OBJECT

This is a beautiful tree with a protection order. There has been no reason given to dothese excessive works that will be detrimental to the local ecology, the health of the tree and thebeauty of the area.

on 2020-09-16   OBJECT

The Ash tree in question is a beautiful specimen which is in no way unsafe. I walkpast/under this tree most days and there is no reason why it should be viciously pruned to 25'above the ground. Not only would this destroy much of the amenity value of the tree, but wouldopen wounds in the tree. With the prevalence of Ash die back, it would put the tree at serious riskof death. The tree has a TPO on it to protect it from unnecessary hacking and should be respectedto protect it from disease. The Bristol tree forum also points out their objections with regard to theabove.In short, there is no supportable requirement for the health of the tree, nor from a health and safetyperspective, to prune the tree. Not doing so also supports Bristol's ambition to retain and increasetree canopy cover across the city.

on 2020-09-16   OBJECT

We object to this application for the following reasons:

1. As this Tree has a Tree Preservation Order (G7 on TPO 1198) and is in an overall healthycondition it shouldn't be cut back unless it is a) for its own benefit and long-term viability, or b) forpublic safety. Neither criteria are being met.

2. It is clear that a single limb is causing an issue by rubbing against the Pavilion Building andshould be cut back. However, this is no reason for the proposed severe crown lifting (up to 8M inheight) and other proposed changes which would make the tree ugly and, potentially, unstable.

3. If to refurbish the pavilion requires cutting down a TPO protected tree, then the pavilion is in thewrong place.

4. If the reason is to improve CCTV coverage, then the cameras need repositioning not the treecutting back.

5. The whole of Stoke Lodge is currently the subject of an application for Town & Village Greenstatus. The application for works to the ash tree should therefore be rejected by the council untilsuch time as the TVG status has been determined to avoid any unnecessary damage to the ashtree.

6. At this time BCC should be doing everything possible to preserve our precious trees in Bristolas well as plant new ones. Stoke Lodge is a unique amenity for the people of Bristol with an

exceptional number of mature trees.

on 2020-09-16   OBJECT

I strongly object to the proposal to reduce this ash tree. It is a magnificent andsubstantial tree and is a major contributor to the visual amenity and wildlife habitat of this area.The tree forms part of a wildlife corridor that is essential for the resident bats, and is even morevital now that the copious ivy growth on the pavilion has been destroyed. The canopy cover andhabitat provided by established, native trees such as this cannot be replaced and must bepreserved for future generations. In a time where we see even school children demonstrating toprotect the environment for their generation and beyond, it would be unthinkable to permit such anextreme proposal.

on 2020-09-16   OBJECT

I object to the request to cut branches off this TPO protected ash tree. There is noreason given why this work is necessary. BCC should uphold its good record in caring for andprotecting the many very special, and loved trees on this site especially the endangered ashtrees.The trees on the Stoke Lodge ground form a beautiful sculptural landscape around theLodge grounds. The proposed very heavy lopping of branches will damage the tree, the wildlife inthe tree and the beautiful canopy line. These local trees are a much loved visual amenity of thewide local community.

on 2020-09-15   OBJECT

Further to my previous objection submitted on September 1st, I want to add my concernthat the presentation of planning applications made by Cotham School at Stoke Lodge on BristolCity Council's planning portal appears to be oddly selective and incomplete.

The relevant background information shown for this specific application obfuscates the existenceof two recent Planning Enforcement cases specifically concerning this TPO-protected Ash tree,and one Planning Appeal concerning the building which is mentioned as part of the reason forproposing the removal of one particular branch, which is rubbing against the tower.

The only item listed under 'Related Cases' is the Property History for 'Stoke Lodge Sports Ground',which lists 25 items, 20 Planning Applications and 5 Planning Enforcements

The two most recent Planning Enforcements directly concern this Ash tree, so why are they notshown as 'Planning Enforcements' under the menu displaying 'Related Cases'?

19/30381/TPO: Nature of Complaint: Damage to roots of Ash Tree (T8)Received Mon 30 Sep 2019 / Decision Date Fri 18 Oct 2019Case closed: Breach - Resolved through negotiation

20/30195/TPO: Nature of Complaint: Activity in proximity to Ash Tree (T8)Received Wed 24 Jun 2020 / Decision Date Wed 22 Jul 2020Case closed: Not expedient to pursue/consider further

Regrettably, the omission of Planning Application 17/06665/F ('Erection of new changing roombuilding and associated works to replace existing building') from the Property History displayed for'Stoke Lodge Sports Ground Shirehampton Road Sea Mills Bristol' arouses my suspicions aboutthe reasons why the traditional and long-standing name and address of 'Stoke Lodge PlayingFields Shirehampton Road Bristol BS9 1BN' were changed on Bristol City Council's PlanningPortal in November 2018.Searching the 'Property History' for 'Stoke Lodge Playing Fields' now leads to the error message"No results found / Please check the search criteria'.But using the Simple Search to access details of Planning Application 17/06665/F shows that itwas submitted using the traditional address ('Stoke Lodge Playing Fields') and reveals 2 'RelatedCases': Properties (1) Stoke Lodge Shirehampton Road Sea Mills Bristol BS9 1BN and PlanningAppeals (1) Erection of new changing room building and associated works to replace existingbuilding. Ref. No: 19/20006/REF | Status: Appeal DismissedWhy are these cases omitted from the 'Property History' displayed for 'Stoke Lodge SportsGround', when they concern exactly the same location, on which all the other planningapplications up to the date of the change of name and address are included?Why was a different postcode used on Cotham School's planning application 18/05206/A ('StokeLodge Playing Field Shirehampton Road Bristol BS9 2BH') linking the playing fields to Royal Mail'spostcodes for West Dene instead of those for Shirehampton Road?Why does the altered address now suggest that the playing fields are in Sea Mills, when they areclearly located in the Bristol council ward of Stoke Bishop, which is the designation in the officialaddresses of all the adjacent properties?And why is no postcode included in the current address 'Stoke Lodge Sports GroundShirehampton Road Sea Mills Bristol'?

on 2020-09-14   OBJECT

This mature tree appears generally healthy, with just a small number of dead branches.It is not causing any obstruction to pedestrians on the footpath. While there might be a case, forsafety reasons, for removing the dead branches, there is no good reason for removing the crown,and to do so would thoroughly spoil the appearance of the tree, as well as reducing wildlifehabitats and environmental benefits.

on 2020-09-14   OBJECT

I wish to object to the unnecessary removal of limbs on this tree. Whilst it is obvious thatone branch is impacting on the pavilion and could/should be removed, it doesn't detract from thefact that this is a derelict building that doesn't have planning permission pending. Therefore can'tquite fathom the hurry or scope of the destruction (removal of every branch up to 8M) other than tofacilitate yet more unnecessary and unwanted CCTV. This is part of a program of over zealoustree works removal and damage that are opposed by the community and will change the nature ofthe environment. We need more trees not less of them.

on 2020-09-14   OBJECT

A regular community citizen, I visit Stoke Lodge frequently and appreciate this smallisland of nature. I can't understand why the tree that has in itself an ecologically system providingmuch needed resource for the known wildlife has to altered to accommodate a man madestructure that can be placed elsewhere. By unnecessarily brutalising the tree will expose it to riskof disease and weaken the natural structure. Trees should remain the priority in this ecologicalfragile infrastructure and man made devises should be placed without interference to trees andsubsequent wildlife.

on 2020-09-14   OBJECT

This ash tree is around 100 years old and is a lovely example of an old ash tree. It is ahealthy and attractive ash with TPO protection. There is a reason why this has been given TPOstatus and removing 8 metres of the lower part of this tree will most likely see its demise. This istotally unnecessary management and the applicant, who has no experience of tree managementhas already shown total disregard for the trees around the playing fields.

There is no reason why a protected tree should be chopped about on the whim of the applicant.

The school's own ecology report dated July 2018 notes that there is moderate to high potential forbats in this area and the tree may also have shallow holes, crevices and dense growths of ivy thatwill be used by roosting bats. Several species of bat (including common and soprano pipistrelle,noctule and Leisler's bats) are regularly seen flying in and out of trees in this area. Bats are aprotected species and we have a duty to ensure that their habitat should not be disturbed withoutgood reason. It is also likely that other species use the tree for nesting, shelter, foraging andcommuting.

The proposal to remove all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towardsand above the building would brutalise, disfigure and ruin the proportions of this impressive tree,turning it into a ridiculous and entirely unnatural shape. I believe that this would unbalance the treeand affect its stability as well as creating an unnatural look to the tree that has already hadtrenches dug through the roots on a previous occasion.

on 2020-09-14   OBJECT

I object to the proposed works to the ash tree on Stoke Lodge.

The ash tree has a TPO on it, so should only have work carried out on it for its own benefit andlong term viability, or for public safety.Neither of these applies to this tree.

If one of these was applicable then the work should be the absolute minimum that would solve theproblem. But this application proposes removal of about 50% of the canopy which is excessiveand would totally ruin the vista of the tree from Stoke Lodge.

The Tree Council, Defra and the Forestry Commission advocate that ash trees that do not pose ahealth and safety risk should be retained in the landscape wherever possible so they can continueto provide biodiversity benefits.'This ash tree is not a health and safety risk.

Also: 'With the exceptions of felling for public safety or timber production, we advise a generalpresumption against felling living ash trees, whether infected or not.This advice should be taken seriously and be adhered to.

No explanation for why this proposed work has been given and as such the application should berejected.

on 2020-09-13   OBJECT

I object to the proposal to crown lift this Ash tree with preservation order by 8 metres asit has become apparent that the reason for doing so is to facilitate the erection of scaffoldingaround the derelict pavilion for possible future refurbishment which has no permission currentlyand no established funding.It is completely unjustifiable to propose such drastic and irreversible work to a Protected andhealthy tree in order to enable the temporary erection of scaffolding!I assume that is exactly the reason why the applicant does not mention why they request 8 metresof crown lifting. No one would approve such a request to enable scaffolding. Scaffolding istemporary, but the damage to the tree is permanent.It seems inconceivable that a school cares so little for the living things for which it is in charge atpresent, unlike the local community.Please dismiss this application.

on 2020-09-11   OBJECT

I have read other comments and many have pointed out the lack of reasons given forthis work. The work does not fall within guidelines and should therefore not happen. i estimate thatthe canopy of this protected tree would be reduced by as much as 50%, and with no reason that Ican see here.

The only supporting statements seem to rely on two factors - the fact that there are plenty of otherash trees locally, and that the pathway should be made safe.

Firstly, while there are other trees of this species locally, this tree is protected by law. Trees arenot protected for no good reason and the guidelines should be adhered to. The number of similartrees is not an excuse.

The safety of passers by is not imminently at risk, this is not an unhealthy tree, the branch is not indanger of falling off. The responsibility for trees and boundaries lies with the council not CothamSchool and if the council feel that the situation is dangerous it will act as in the recent case ofstorm damage to the oak.

Again we find Cotham applying for permission to do something with no real reasons given apartfrom it's own convenience. As much as I'd like to support a school in its endeavours I cannot bringmyself to support the quite unnecessary brutalising of this naturally shaped, and protected tree, assuch I object to this application.

on 2020-09-11   OBJECT

A Tree Preservation Order is extremely hard to acquire. The legal protection given by aTPO against unnecessary pruning and other works needs to be taken very seriously.

The extensive removal of branches proposed in this application does not seem to be for thebenefit of the tree or the public. In fact these tree works appear needless and harmful.

The many open wounds resulting from such works would surely put the ash in danger of infection.Lifting the crown to such a height would also make the tree less stable. At best the extensivepruning would leave this beautiful tree with an unbalanced and awkward appearance.

Stoke Lodge's border trees are vital in deurbanising the landscape and in providing scenic viewswithin the site of the Grade II Listed house. This ash is one of the more prominent border trees,and its value within its setting is obvious even from a distance. The historic Ebenezer Lanefootpath is also enhanced by this tree and others in its TPO group. It is particularly important inscreening housing beyond the field and in softening the outlines of the pavilion and tower. Theproposed works would make these structures stand out more and detract from Stoke Lodge'sbeauty and its quiet rural feel.

The border trees are also necessary for Stoke Lodge's wildlife, including its many species of flyinginsects and the various species of bat that feed on them.

Apart from the branch that has been damaged over the years from rubbing against the building, Ican't see any reason for works to this beautiful and much valued tree apart from the general

maintenance that BCC tree officers regularly oversee to keep Bristol's trees healthy and the publicsafe.

Please do not allow this application's request for such extensive works to this ash protected withinG7 of TPO 1192.

on 2020-09-10   OBJECT

The proposal to deface this tree is totally unnecessary, it risks killing an important andprotected tree and the pruning would completely ruin its appearance. It's clear from the objectionsalready made how important this tree is to the community, please respect that. Also, the treescreens the derelict pavillion and helps to maintain the beauty of this important green space,removing so many branches would impact the amenity value, and beauty of the whole openspace.

No justification has been given for this harsh pruning, even the tree consultant has not said it isnecessary, as stated here many believe it is to improve the CCTV coverage which is no reason todamage and possibly ultimately kill a mature native tree, and unless branches were alreadydamaged or dying there can be no possible justification for this request. Please listen to thecommunity who deeply care about this open space, it's trees and it's wildlife.

on 2020-09-10   OBJECT

These are completely unnecessary works to a protected tree and should not be allowed.Please save this tree!

on 2020-09-10   OBJECT

We need to protect these trees which should have been safe from unnecessary pruningonce the TPOs were granted.There is no evidence that the works are for the benefit of the tree quite too the contrary

on 2020-09-10   OBJECT

I wish to object to the proposed works on a mature and healthy TPO protected Ash treelocated behind the derelict pavilion at Stoke Lodge Field, for the following reasons.

i. The works are not only unwarranted in themselves (as detailed by BTF and other objectors), butthey also seem to be part of a determined and ongoing plan by Cotham School to compromise ordestroy this particular tree. Well over a year ago Cotham School made another planningapplication (19/04039/VP) to cut back upper branches of this Ash tree for no real reason otherthan to facilitate a wholly unnecessary expansion of the coverage provided by an intrusive andcontroversial panoramic CCTV camera mounted on the brick tower behind the derelict pavilion.This destructive proposal was rejected by the planning office because the application made byCotham School contained a false certificate of ownership of the tree in question - which in itself isa criminal offence under 65(6) of the Town and Country Planning Act of 1990.

ii. On Thursday August 29th of 2019, concerned residents spotted contractors employed byCotham School using a large mechanical excavator to dig a cabling trench behind the pavilionwhich severely damaged parts of the root system of this TPO protected Ash tree. The contractors,who were installing a fibre optic cable for the CCTV camera, pleaded ignorance saying thatCotham School had not briefed them about the TPO orders, nor warned them of the criminalliability they faced for damaging a TPO tree. From documents subsequently obtained under FOIA,it appears that Cotham School were later reprimanded by local planning enforcement officers, andwere ordered to carry out £1,000 worth of remedial work by tree specialists on the root systemsdamaged by their vandalism. The FOI documents made it very clear that this remediation wasbeing ordered in lieu of a criminal prosecution that would otherwise have taken place.

iii. In early June of 2020 local residents became aware that the root zone of this same Ash treebehind the pavilion had been trenched through once again by contractors employed by CothamSchool. This time it was a team of electricians who were laying in and connecting up powersupplies for the SALTO electronic RFID sensor and electromagnetic gate closing system on thesecurity gate at West Dene. Cotham School have attempted to prevaricate about the nature andlocation of this trenching work when challenged over it, but it is very easy to verify what was donebecause the contractors used fresh tubular conduit to page power from the DB inside the bricktower. Please note this area is regularly photographed by volunteer field watchers who possess adigital archive of time/date stamped photographic evidence.

iv. Further light was thrown on the possible purpose of this planning application this week whenlocal residents spoke to contractors who had asked for directions to the old pavilion. They turnedout to be working for a scaffolding firm who had been asked by Cotham School to supply a quotefor erecting a substantial quantity of scaffolding around the structure of the old pavilion as aprelude to its proposed refurbishment. Once again the contractors had not been briefed about thepresence of TPO trees in the working area, nor on the various practical and legal complicationsarising from this. I would venture to suggest that this planning application's proposal to perform an8 metre 'crown lift' on the Ash tree has nothing whatsoever to do with any concern on the part ofthe applicants about the aesthetics, balance, or health of this TPO tree, but is being proposedsolely to faciltate future work of erecting scaffolding around the old pavilion, including the bricktower behind it, as part of a refurbishment scheme which many residents suspect is unlikely everto take place. Cotham School, who have already lost three planning decisions relating to thisscheme, have now - acccording to recent FOI releases - apparently been ordered to hand back toESFA (their core funding agency) substantial amounts of money already claimed for works atStoke Lodge.

v. It should be noted that there is an active TVG proposal in progress in respect of Stoke Lodge,and while the old pavilion itself falls outside of the TVG scope, it is relevant for another reason.Cotham School have made it abundantly clear that they will vacate Stoke Lodge and give up theirlease if the TVG is granted. That being so, why should Cotham School be granted permission forworks that would irreversably damage a landmark TPO tree when there is every possibility thatthey will no longer be tenants in a few months time?

on 2020-09-09   OBJECT

This is another act of vandalism sought by Cotham at Stoke Lodge.Any small works for safety can of course be carried out by appropriate gardeners but since thiswork is largely to assist in putting up further CCTV cameras where no CCTV cameras are neededthe application should be rejected.

on 2020-09-08   OBJECT

I object to this proposal for the following reasons:-1 - This valued mature tree is subject to T.P.O. no.1192 & consequently should be affordedprotection from any unnecessary works that might cause harm. None of the proposal will benefitthe trees health, it's more likely to cause harm to the tree.2 - The tree affords some softening of the impact of an ugly tower within the beautiful parklandwhich itself is part of the listed building of Stoke Lodge.3 - This ash tree is a prominent tree within the landscape which adds to the sites amenity value.4 - The proposal appears to be for the sole benefit of the Applicants potential use of cctv. This isnot a valid reason for such unnecessary pruning of a protected tree.5 - There are no genuine reasons relating to health & safety to warrant carrying out these works.6 - The Applicant has on 2 previous occasions been found to have caused unnecessary damageto this tree.

on 2020-09-08   OBJECT

I object to the above planning application in line with the comments made by the BristolTree Forum.

There is no reason given why these works are proposed - there will certainly be no benefit to thetree itself, particularly at a time when Ash trees are at risk due to the Ash die back epidemic.

There would be a negative on the local wildlife - several species of bats are regularly seen in thisarea.

There would be a detrimental effect on appearance of the tree and having spoken to theneighbours referred to in the application the presence of the tree in its present form is highlybeneficial as it blocks their view of the ugly tower at the rear of the dilapidated school pavilion. Iunderstand that they have not been consulted with regards to the work and it would appear thatthere is not evidence to suggest that the health of the tree would be improved.

on 2020-09-08   OBJECT

This is completely unnecessary. A tree of this age should be protected and there shouldbe no argument that this tree SHOULNT be touched or cut down in any shape or form

on 2020-09-07   OBJECT

I object to the proposed Application to severely cut this beautiful old tree.

The cavalier attitude of Cotham School towards nature at Stoke Lodge beggar's belief. This workis simply to allow greater and unnecessary CCTV coverage of Stoke Lodge.

The most sensible option would be for the CCTV camera to be re-sited.

The only works which should be allowed, are those considered necessary for the preservation ofthe tree.

If the TVG2 Application is successful, the fence and camera will need to be removed. This is ashort-term fix by Cotham School, for (hopefully) a short-term problem.

Please reject this Application.

on 2020-09-07   OBJECT

No reason given by Cotham School for this application.There is a threat to the well being of this tree if this work is undertaken.Makes tree look like a lollypop!What right has Cotham School to make this application?

on 2020-09-07   OBJECT

I just want to add my voice to the numerous objections to dismembering this beautifultree for the sake of a pavilion which might never be built or repaired. It is a tree with a TPO on it,which should mean it is treated with respect and care, not butchered for the sake of a tappingnoise on a building!

on 2020-09-06   OBJECT

The matter of the proposed severe pruning of a perfectly healthy ash tree (one thatdoes not have the ash die-back disease which has plagued so many round the country, and ishome to families of bats) because it appears to hinder the view from a CCTV camera attached to aderelict building which is fenced off, could be so easily and quickly solved. Move the CCTVcamera. Leave the ash tree untouched, or maybe just remove the only branch which brushesagainst the inaccessible ruin.

The many objections from citizens of Bristol which you have received have raised the myriadreasons why this dangerous procedure for the tree should not happen and should be forbidden. Itrust that all these when considered will result in the proposal being refused.

on 2020-09-06   OBJECT

I object to the proposed mutilation of the beautiful ash tree behind the pavilion at StokeLodge parkland. The crown raising by eight metres is completely unnecessary and would not onlyaffect the aesthetic beauty of this fine old tree but could, in the long term, have seriousimplications to the health of this tree. By all means remove dead wood that is a health hazard forhumans and the tree itself, but the removal of so many healthy branches would be vandalismagainst such a fine specimen. Ash dieback is expected kill 80% of ash trees in the UK so we, andthe wildlife species that depend on them, need every ash tree we have.

I urge the committee to reject this application.

on 2020-09-06   OBJECT

I hope you will reject this application by Cotham School to ruin a huge, lovely, healthyash tree that has already suffered so much bad treatment from Cotham's fence works at StokeLodge, when they dug into and contaminated the root zones of this and so many other beautifultrees by mixing the cement in situ to fix in the posts. We won't know for years the lasting effects onthis and all the other trees that were abused in early 2019. Will this ash tree recover from it, orfrom the mechanical digger illegally chopping through its roots during the CCTV cabling work?(The school narrowly escaped prosecution for that offence the second time they tried it.)

What we do know is that any further work would probably mean this ash tree wouldn't survive,because the shock of losing so many branches is unlikely to be survivable. These aren't theactions of an organisation that cares at all about the ecology, the environment or the beauty ofStoke Lodge. I ask you to look carefully at why no valid reasons are given for the school's applyingto do this work, and what would be the longterm results of allowing it. Please consider carefullywhat the school's real intentions are for this tree and its surroundings, and if they're compatiblewith the protection of the amenity of this valuable site that is so vital for the local community.

Please also consider that the school is three miles away, so it wouldn't have to suffer the results ofthe 'refurbishment' and big increase of the pavilion's use and capacity, without any traffic plan Butthe Stoke Lodge community would bear the damaging impact, as Traffic Management's repeatedrequests for a traffic plan show. I accept that the refurbishment is not given as the reason theschool wants to hack back this tree that they want out of their way, but since no reason is given inthe application, surely you are justified in joining the dots.

Because this is an important tree, with a high amenity value, it has a high monetary value. TheBristol Tree Forum estimates that value at £79,000, and consequently it is protected by a TPO,which means that this tree should not be interfered with unless it is in the tree's own best interests,or concerns public safety. The work Cotham School is proposing Is NOT consistent with the tree'sbest interests or even its survival, and it isn't necessary for public safety. There don't seem to beany advantages at all from allowing this destructive work to be done, but there's a whole list ofdisadvantages.

The tree would be hideously disfigured by having so many of its lower branches hacked off. Itwould be unrecognisable as an ash, which spreads and trails its branches downwards andoutwards to mix with its neighbours. It's a brilliant mixer and blender, filling in the gaps and givingcontinuity and cover but also letting through the light and air and rain, which is why it is such animportant tree for wildlife. It creates the 'dappled shade' you read about. Hundreds of creaturesand plants and fungi can live in the habitat the ash supplies. Near this ash we know that severalspecies of bats" visit and hunt and some, like the noctules that roost in trees not buildings, maylive in it. This would all be disrupted and threatened if this tree - part of the foraging grounds of aprotected species - was ruined for ever by losing all the sweeping branches that grow below thetop of the tower. It wouldn't hide the tower, either, which is one of its desirable contributions to theamenity of the parkland.

There are too many unknowns that I hope would stop you from approving this application even if itwasn't totally inconsistent with the TPO and with common sense and with respect for wildlife,ecology and environmental issues. There is the combined TVG application just about to beconsidered, Public Right of Way registration waiting in the queue for registration, decisions onschool funding and uncertainty about transport and distancing that may affect the school's use ofthe field. The traffic Issue mentioned before is still unresolved. How and why should this proposalget approval before all these issues have been worked through? If the TVG application wasgranted, for one thing, the whole picture would be different.

Please don't let down the community who, unlike Cotham School, love and appreciate the trees ofStoke Lodge and work hard to protect them. We recognise the benefits and beauty this ash treegives us and we want it protected. Please reject this application.

on 2020-09-06   OBJECT

I am fully in support of trees being maintained properly so that they are safe forpedestrians on footpaths below trees. I feel that this application has been submitted to completelysupport Cotham School CCTV camera position only, and with no regard for the tree or the safetyor any pedestrians. The owner of garden that the branch has grown into has expressed no wish tohave the branches chopped, the tower is derelict and the pathway is clear to use, there isabsolutely no sensible reason to hack at this beautiful tree.MOVE YOUR CAMERA, NOT THE TREE, COTHAM SCHOOL!!!

on 2020-09-05   OBJECT

(For anyone wondering what on earth is wrong with a school wanting to chop thebranches off a tree, read on.The (branch rubbing the corner of the tower is, say 12 inches diameter and the rubbed area is,say, a couple of inches occurring say, 10 ft away from the tree trunk - ESTIMATION). The tree inquestion is protected by a Tree Protection Order.)

Official concerns from the school....a branch is rubbing on the pavilion tower.the risk of injury if this branch falls due to lack of maintenance.

I object to the application because:

A).The pavilion is derelict and riddled with asbestos (school's report stated 17 areas).The public are kept out.It is still derelict because the school have not repaired it for nine years.The cutting of lots of the tree branches don't prevent 'reasonable enjoyment'of the property,because is not used (see above).(Furthermore, even if the school plans to refurb the pavilion, It doesn't have consent to use publicmoney for this purpose).The school told the Funding Agency that referring the pavilion would not be viable or cost-effective. Therefore no risk to anyone IF that part of the branch fell off.

As much as I'd love to see proper facilities there, there won't be any and certainly not anyoneusing it for some time.

B).The school doesn't provide any reason or purpose for the severe crown lifting, even though areason is required by the application form. This is strange. In fact it used a mini-digger to dig atrench through the roots of this tree (twice), resulting in the Council requiring the school to repairas best it should (October 2019) to mitigate the damage caused to the tree or FACEPROSECUTION.

C)The school's own ecology report of July 2018 states that there is moderate to high potential forforaging and commuting bats in this area and the tree may also have shallow holes, crevices anddense growths of ivy that could be used by roosting bats. I often see bats flying in and out of treesin this area. Bats are a protected species and their habitat should not be disturbed for the benefitof the pavilion refurb (which is a hope not a plan as it stands (see A).

D).The school have not stated any structural or physiological faults with this Ash - probably becauseit's healthy and beautiful. If the rubbed part of the tree somehow snapped, the broken bit would fallon the pavilion which isn't used and is fenced off (see A). Their aims don't ensure the long-termviability of the tree or mitigating any imminent health and safety risk so the tree should be left.

ONE branch is identified by the school as creating any kind of possible issue. This could bepruned back but even then, there's just not evidence that these works to a protected tree arenecessary for a legitimate reason.Please apply your published policy and refuse this application as there is no legitimate reason forthe work. BCC policy states that 'We do not prune or remove a council owned tree to stop thenuisance of overhanging branches.

on 2020-09-05   OBJECT

I wish to register my strong objection to this application. It seeks permission to carry outwork on a perfectly healthy ash tree which is protected by a Tree Protection Order and shouldtherefore be left unspoilt unless it needs management for its own continued health, or because ofa safety issue. The applicant has given no credible reasons for the scale of the work he proposes.Without any justification for breaching the terms of the TPO, the work cannot reasonably bepermitted.

This attractive, healthy, mature tree performs the valuable functions of screening the derelictpavilion and contributing to the cover, habitat and foraging opportunities of bats, birds and otherwildlife. It has high amenity value on a beautiful site with community access for leisure activities,and is visible from almost the whole of the Stoke Lodge estate. The application proposes theremoval of 'all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towards and above thebuilding' (i.e. the dilapidated, long deserted pavilion) and 'the three lowest limbs that overhang thefootpath outside of the playing fields'. This would mean destroying approximately 50% of aprotected tree, and sacrificing its contribution to amenity, screening and wildlife habitat, as well asits own distinctive character and shape, for no stated reason whatsoever.

Only management work that is necessary for its longterm health and viability is permitted on a treewith a TPO, unless there is a good and sufficient reason. This application does not even attempt toprovide one, and it should be rejected on these grounds alone. However, in addition, it should berejected because the proposed work is not just unnecessary and unjustified, but would prejudicethe tree's chances of survival. It would make it more susceptible to disease as a result of thedrastic pruning and the remaining wounds. In the course of Cotham School's fence and CCTV

installations, they have already illegally severed some of the roots of this tree on severaloccasions. Further damage is likely to prevent all possibility of its recovery. It is hard not tosuspect that the school would prefer to have the tree out of the way of the pavilion refurbishment,which is already complicated by its derelict condition and the substantial presence of weatheredasbestos. The future and timing of any refurbishment are unclear, and it is not certain that it willhappen at all, given the funding problems. In any case it is not the job of BCC tree officers toenable the applicant to inflict unlawful damage on a protected tree that contributes so much to thesetting of a listed building, and presents no immediate danger to the public, from whom it is safelyfenced off.

I ask you to resist the applicant's attempt to push through a proposal for work on a tree he admitsis causing no damage. The school chose not to accept any responsibility or jurisdiction over any ofthe trees at Stoke Lodge. I cannot see why they were permitted to make the application at all. Thelandlord, BCC, owns this and all the other trees, and should abide by the terms of the TPO and itsown Tree Management Policy, because the applicant fails to provide any reason whatsoever notto.

on 2020-09-04   OBJECT

I object strongly to Cotham School's renewed proposal for unnecessary, radical anddamaging works on a publicly owned, healthy European Ash with a TPO. The two minor issuescited are no reason for such a wholesale assault on the tree. The small damaged branch shouldbe trimmed and the one which rubs could perhaps be protected for the tree's own good. In anycase, the minimum effective localised work on that branch is the most that is necessary. Theapplication's imprecise assertion that it is rubbing against the tower does not prove any immediaterisk that dictates its removal. For all the other work suggested, no reasons at all are evenattempted. Why is this application being given even cursory consideration, when the schoolnegotiated specific terms in its lease that exempt it from responsibility for the trees on StokeLodge?

The applicant gives no justification for bypassing the terms of the TPO and of BCC's TreeManagement Policy, which allows only the minimum work necessary to safeguard the well-beingof the tree and of public safety. Such disproportionate, harmful mutilation of a protected tree (thatthe applicant neither owns nor has responsibility for maintaining) would normally be disallowed byBCC Tree Officers as having no benefit for the tree or for the public. Since the only reason we'vebeen told of for the unnecessary felling and poisoning the group of smaller trees was the clearingof the sight lines of Cotham School's (transgressive) CCTV cameras, it is likely that this is also theschool's reason for wanting to get rid of as many of the ash tree branches as possible. This reasonis not stated in the application, nor is it a valid excuse for breaching a TPO. In any case, thecamera, having obviously been mislocated, can easily be moved, and should be.

The Bristol Tree Forum estimates that this magnificent, healthy, mature (a century old) European

ash Is worth about £79,000. They used the widely accepted CAVAT method of valuation, andfactored in the tree's prominence, visibility, accessibility and high amenity value in the Grade 2listed Stoke Lodge's original parkland setting (an Important Open Space with protected communityaccess).This tree is invaluable and irreplaceable and it belongs to the people of Bristol and beyond, not tothe applicant, who proposes removing all branches originating below 8 meters, or 'crown lifting'.Crown lifting is unsightly and insensitive, especially for an ash, since it would destroy thedistinctive spreading, airy, habit that is integral to thIs tree's high ecological, environmental andaesthetic value. Why would any reputable arboriculturist recommend inflicting such damage onthis tree in this setting? Crown-lifting would create a stiff, anonymous, graceless toilet brush shapethat could no longer mask the ugly pavilion and tower, or weave itself into the tapestry of thesurrounding trees. Every Bristolian or visitor passing or entering Stoke Lodge would be robbed offine, beautiful, mature tree's enhancement of this much appreciated green corner. It is highlyvisible as you pass by, intrinsic to the calming sense of a peaceful backdrop to the busy roads.Walking underneath it and looking up, you can see the sky as the light filters beautifully throughand between its feathery leaves. To approve this application would be to broker an overwhelmingloss and theft from Bristol people.

Recently, a request for a TPO on an ash tree in Clifton was refused by BCC on the grounds thatcrown-lifting had destroyed its characteristic shape, and thus its value. It was no longer worthprotecting. For the same local authority to now permit thIs applicant to devalue an irreplaceablepublic asset in exactly the same way, merely because it obstructs a camera, would be a travesty.It would fly in the face of BCC's declared ecological emergency and commitment to expanding ourtree canopy. Mature trees are simply not replaceable with new planting, even in optimalcircumstances, which rarely apply.

Further points in support of my objection follow.

1. The application implies that BCC tree officers have pre-judged this application by supporting theproposed works. This calls into question proper impartiality and open-mindedness. To avoid anyquestion of collusion or unfair influence, officers thus involved would presumably be excluded fromfuture decisions on this application. It is also hard to believe that the Bosky Trees arboriculturist -or any qualified arboriculturist - would recommend this unnecessary mutilation, that wouldcompromise the long term health of a healthy, TPOd tree. His comments, however, are given outof context, which the applicant should be required to supply.

2. The European or common ash is our native ash species, embedded and ubiquitous in rural andurban landscapes. It supports more bio-diversity and ecological functioning than any other singlespecies can replicate - about 1000 species of flora and fauna are associated with ash trees - soevery instance of ash die-back represents a significant loss of habitat and species. However,research suggests that 'Fewer symptoms have been observed so far in ash trees growing on wellmanaged open sites, such as parklands' and mature trees are less susceptible than immature

specimens.Some trees are resistant and some survive the disease and regrow, and time is needed forgenetic and other studies if replacement of lost trees is to succeed. Researchers recommend thatall healthy ash trees (like the subject of this application) should be carefully conserved. Even ifdiseased, they should not be felled unless they present a risk, because they still provide invaluablehabitat. This tree, like Bristol's other ash trees, needs responsible care to survive, in the interestsof the wider environment as well as the local. What it doesn't need is butchering that will make itmore susceptible to life-limiting disease.Furthermore, around this particular ash, bats (all bats being protected species)- Leisler's, noctulesand common and soprano pipistrelles - are regularly observed foraging. Others may well visit. Theforaging grounds of protected species should not be interfered with without good reason, whichcertainly does not exist in this case, according to the application. Cotham School's own ecologyreport, relating to a previous pavilion application, noted the 'moderate to high' potential of thetree's immediate environment for foraging and commuting bats. There may also be roostingopportunities in the tree itself and dead wood should be left in situ if it poses no immediate risk.

3. This tree forms a vital part of the original parkland setting of a beautiful, historic, culturallysignificant, early Victorian listed building. Having pre-dated the pavilion by several decades, thisfine ash tree's ability to soften that derelict structure's unattractive appearance contributessubstantially to the general amenity of the parkland.

4. The site is the subject of a TVG application which is progressing, and for which an inspector hasnow been appointed. A decision could be made in as little as a year and, if TVG status wereapproved, would mean the removal of the fence and the gate that the CCTV camera is intended toview. Removal of healthy branches or anything else from a TPOd tree - even if that were desirablein any case - would be a waste of public money as well as contrary to BCC and national planningpolicy. The school has also stated that it would leave the site altogether were TVG status to begranted. Not that they need to, as there is nothing to prevent the site revertIng to shared schooland community use, which existed for about seven decades before the academisation of CothamSchool, and which the community hopes will again be the case.

5. No structural faults or problems with the tree's condition are alleged in this application. It ishealthy and whole. The neighbours whose gardens are overhung by its branches do not wantthem cut back. They cause no damage to the pavilion or any neighbouring properties. The pavilionsite is securely fenced off and so there is no risk to the public and it is BCC Tree Managementpolicy not to prune overhanging branches. There is absolutely no excuse for Cotham School - withno responsibility for the trees on Stoke Lodge, on which it merely has a lease permitting its use ofthe playing field for occasional PE lessons - to apply to hack back a protected tree, belonging to itslandlord, that is causing no damage. It is extraordinary that BCC, as landlord, has entertained theproposal for even a minute.

6. The application claims that removing branches on the Ebenezer Lane side is to balance the

removal of branches overhanging on the pavilion side. This is ridiculous since no valid reason Isoffered for removing the pavilion-side branches in the first place. It is obviously nonsensical tocarry out unnecessary mutilation, just for its effects to need remedying by further mutilation.Incidentally, this nonsense shows that the tree may well be destabilised by removing so much ofits volume below 8 metres, making it top-heavy and thus creating a new risk for surroundingproperties, and presentIng another unnecessary potential liability for BCC.

7. This uncalled-for work would be the applicant's fourth known assault on this tree, the threeprevious instances being the excavation and cementing in of fence posts within its root zone, andtwo episodes of illicit use of a mechanical digger - to install CCTV cabling - that severed its rootsand required remedial work to be imposed. The consequences for the tree will not be known foryears, and it can only be hoped It will recover and its prospects not unduly damaged. However, itis extremely unlikely to be viable in the long term if this new onslaught is approved, while it is stillrecovering (we hope) from the previous violations. Its viability and contribution to amenity and theenvironment are precisely what its TPO is meant to protect. As well as harming its appearanceand wellbeing owing to the loss of close to 50% of its growth, the work would almost inevitablyresult in pathogens entering the tree's system through the many wounds and scars it would be leftwith. Research by DEFRA, the Forestry Commission, the Ash Council and others, shows thatwounds unarguably increase susceptibility to fungal and other disease, including ash die back. Itwould be irresponsible for BCC's planners and tree officers to treat this as just a local breach andnot make the effort to protect this tree.

8. The application states that the tree is not causing any actionable nuisance or damage to thepavilion (or to any other neighbouring properties), nor does it prevent their 'reasonable enjoyment'of the building, which is currently unused and derelict. So on what grounds are they proposing thiswork, and why is Cotham School proposing it at all when they have ceded responsibility for thetrees to the landlord?In any case, Cotham is a academy school, not grounds managers, and not a suitable custodian ofthe numerous important trees growing at Stoke Lodge and intended for the enjoyment and benefitof the public and the local community.

9. In a comment (18 August 2020) on another planning application (20/03697/VD | T3 EnglishOak), Bristol Tree Forum (BTF) pointed out that since signing the lease - which gives them use ofthe playing field rent-free - in 2011, Cotham School has displayed 'an unhelpful, destructiveattitude towards the trees growing here.' Numerous members of the community have beenshocked and saddened by the school's treatment of Stoke Lodge and its precious trees andwildlife. They school has repeatedly refused to 'maintain the site in a way that respects or cares forthe trees' (BTF's words again) and have carried out gratuitous clearing, felling and stumppoisoning, greatly to the detriment of wildlife cover and breeding sites as well as to the amenity,aesthetics and accessibility of the estate.

In your consideration of this application, I hope you will give due weight to the motivation of the

applicant/Cotham School, which is the ambition to control, privatise and profit financially from thispublicly owned Important Open Space, but not to protect the wellbeing, viability or long termsurvival of the trees. This is surely relevant in relation to an application to do work which will haveso many negative effects for a whole community, for the environment and wildlife as well as thetrees, and has provoked so many strong objections. There doesn't seem to be a single potentialpositive to balance things up.The school is, unusually, indemnified against all repair and maintenance costs, even damageinflicted by their own actions or negligence, involving the Stoke Lodge boundaries and the trees.The costs, as I understand it, will be borne by BCC and funded by the taxpayer. The school,unfortunately but predictably, accepts no responsibility or duty of care, unlike the community,which cares very much and continues to do its utmost to keep Stoke Lodge, especially the trees,safe from the negative effects of the school's hostile agenda.

Please reject this application. Please support and enforce the TPO which was intended to keepthis lovely tree from the kind of unjustified, deliberate harm the applicant wishes to inflict on it on awhim, or because of a mistakenly positioned camera. Please save this tree because it is healthyand beautiful and loved, because it was there long before us and should flourish there long afterus, for the enjoyment of future generations of Bristolians and to provide shelter and roosts andfood for local wildlife long into the future of Stoke Lodge.

on 2020-09-02   OBJECT

I object most strongly to the application to mutilate the ash tree by the pavilion at StokeLodge. There is no good reason to do this to a protected tree and it could only have a detrimentaleffect on the health and appearance of the tree. We have yet to see if any damage was done toany of the protected trees on the parkland by the erection of the controversial fence around it andnow we have a potential attack on another beautiful tree for no good reason.

on 2020-09-01   OBJECT

I strongly object to this disfiguring radical surgery for no good reason to this fine Ashtree which is owned by the City Council and protected by a Tree Preservation Order for itsconsiderable public visual amenity value. It is a most beautiful tree both to stand beneath andadmire, and to view from afar.

This prominent tree is visible from all of the entrances into the Stoke Lodge parkland and makes asignificant contribution to the landscape setting of the Grade II listed Stoke Lodge house which isenjoyed as a local open space and school playing field. It also overhangs the well-used EbenezerLane public footpath and provides a beautiful canopy of branches and leaves for anyone walkingbeneath it as well as welcome shade in sunny weather.

It was 18 m or 59.05 ft high when surveyed three years ago and is likely to have grown more sincethen. It is estimated to be about 100 years old following a measurement of its girth. It retains itsnatural shape, displaying the typical form of an Ash tree, and has not suffered from any surgery inthe past. It is in good health with no structural or physiological faults and is no safety risk to thepublic.

All of this makes it a tree of high public visual amenity value.

The proposed surgery is registered as :

"Crown lift to 8 m on the Pavilion side". The applicant describes this as "Crown lift by removing allof the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towards and above the building".

"The lower limbs on the site side overhang the roof of the building, one of these branches isrubbing heavily against the building and would cause severe injury if it falls (a photo has beensubmitted with this application to show this concern)".

The building is the semi-derelict pavilion which has a brick-built, plant room tower 7.09 m 23 fthigh. I have looked closely at the branch nearest the tower and do not believe that it touches thetower let alone rubs heavily against it. There is a clear gap between the two. But even if thebranch was touching the tower no evidence has been provided to show that the branch is anyimminent risk to health and safety. The pavilion is fenced off from the public, and may never berefurbished. Even if it was refurbished the tower is unlikely to be needed because newer heatingsystems are now available. The recently proposed single storey replacement pavilion had a plantroom with no tower. It would be reprehensible if all the branches starting below 8 m 26 ft on half ofthis tree were cut down on the spurious grounds of one rubbing branch, and then the redundanttower was demolished.

"Remove the three lowest limbs that overhang the footpath outside of the playing fields".

No reason is given as to why this work is needed. There is no evidence of any health or safety riskto the public from these branches or that the owners of the neighbouring gardens over which theyextend have asked for this. It can only be assumed that it is intended to even up the otherwise lop-sided appearance of the tree after the other half of the canopy has been severely raised in height.

It is a delight to stand on the Ebenezer Lane footpath under this tree and admire its natural shapeand the tracery made by its branches and its leaves. It would be a completely unneccessary lossto the appearance, value and public enjoyment of this tree should these branches be removed.

It is estimated that these two proposals would remove at least half of the Ash tree's canopy. Theeffect of this would be to reduce the tree to an unnatural 'lollipop' shape and spoil its intrinsicbeauty and value as a tree protected for these very reasons by a Tree Preservation Order.

I ask that permission is refused for this disfiguring radical surgery to this fine Ash tree.

on 2020-09-01   OBJECT

The work now proposed is against both the letter and the spirit of the Tree PreservationOrder that exists to protect this veteran tree, which was in situ for decades before the erection ofthe pavilion so close to the boundary of the field, and is a prominent and much-loved feature of theparkland, not least for its role in masking the ugly brick building on an estate that was until recentlyaccepted as the curtilage of Grade II listed house Stoke Lodge.

If permitted, such severe pruning would also certainly have severely negative consequences forthe biodiversity that the tree helps to sustain. Cotham School's previous removal of substantialfoliage from the long-disused and now-derelict building has already compromised the valuablehabitat of pipistrelle and noctule bats and a wide variety of insects and birds.

As a local resident whose family has lived for decades on the adjacent Cross Elms estate ofcouncil-built houses and bungalows, I have zero faith in Cotham School's willingness or ability toavoid future damage to the flora and fauna of Stoke Lodge in general and this much-abused treein particular. Especially where to do so conflicts with the academy's ambitions to redevelop the siteas a commercial sports ground, while failing to address the challenges involved in bringing largenumbers of people to narrow residential streets without making realistic provision for safe transportand parking.

Despite the TPO prohibiting wilful damage or destruction to this tree, Cotham School haspreviously been censured for failing to ensure that the contractors employed to erect its perimeterfence and to dig trenches for cabling its CCTV surveillance system used the prescribed tools andprocedures, consequently permitting and condoning cutting into its roots in various places on

several occasions despite being officially reprimanded. Even after Cotham School agreed to fundremediation works to some of this damage (as an expedient to avoid the prosecution to which theacademy was demonstrably liable), its contractors proceeded to cause further damage byrepeating their offending behaviour.

Government guidance for applications to work on a TPO-protected tree states that applicants"should demonstrate that the proposal is a proportionate solution to their concerns" (Paragraph:068 Reference ID: 36-068-20140306).The drastic extent of the work proposed in this application is out of proportion to the reasons givenfor it, which seem designed to further Cotham School's ambitions for the currently derelict pavilionand CCTV camera surveillance rather than being for the benefit of the tree, the wildlife, or theamenity value of both to the community.

The applicant supports his assertion that he "fears that (the tree) might break or fall" by merelystating that one branch which "is rubbing heavily against the building ... would cause severe injuryif it falls". Any branch on a substantial veteran tree could cause severe injury if it falls - that in itselfis no justification for removing them competely when less drastic measures could ensure safetyand preserve visual balance.

Government guidance on "where a (TPO-protected) tree presents an immediate risk of seriousharm" clearly states that "Work should only be carried out to the extent that it is necessary toremove the risk". Yet, having stated that only "One small broken branch overhangs the footpathinside the playing fields", the applicant then proposes to "Remove the three lowest limbs thatoverhang the footpath outside of the playing fields". Why? There is not even a statement, muchless any substantiating evidence, that any of these limbs either inside or outside the playing fieldsis causing a problem.

The applicant also proposes removing "any hanging branches or deadwood in the crown", in spiteof the government advice regarding TPO-protected trees that "Dead trees and branches canprovide very valuable habitats for plants and wildlife, which may also be protected under otherlegislation. To conserve biodiversity it can be good practice to retain dead wood on living trees".(Paragraph: 079 Reference ID: 36-079-20140306)

The applicant's statement that "Two long lower lateral limbs extend over the footpath outside ofthe site and overhang neighbouring gardens" is merely a description, and does not present anyreason or information to justify removing healthy limbs that contribute to the natural majestic shapeof the tree. Moreover, I understand that the owners of the neighbouring property are very happy tohave part of this beautiful healthy tree within their garden.

While accepting that it would be beneficial for any broken branches to be removed, and for thebranch that is rubbing against the tower to be shortened, I see no justification for removing all ofthis TPO-protected tree's limbs up to a height of 8 metres - significantly one full metre clear of the

building, which is clearly the real motivation for this proposed work.

It is surely significant that Cotham School's previous planning application seeking to remove lowerbranches from this tree specifically stated that the intention was to provide clear sightlines for theCCTV camera that has been installed on the pavilion tower: application number 19/04039/VP is nolonger visible on the planning portal, after Bristol City Council wrote to advise that the "applicationhas been cancelled for the following reason - The Local Planning Authority has established that anincorrect ownership declaration has been made".

I am surprised that this application 20/03288/VP has been validated, because the owner of thetree has not been identified on the application form, where all but two boxes in section 6 'TreeOwnership' have been left blank: despite selecting 'No' to the question "Is the applicant the ownerof the tree(s)?" the applicant has failed to provide details of the owner's name and address asrequired, bizarrely declaring only "City Hall" in the box marked "Address Line 1" and providing nocontact details.

Given Cotham School's proven tendency to present a self-serving distorted version of the situationat Stoke Lodge, I am concerned that the provision of only an extract from the Tree ManagementSchedule prepared by Bosky Trees dated 16th October 2019 does not allow for public scrutinyand understanding of the full context.

I also find very disturbing the contents of an email which was sent on 22 July 2020 from'Aboricultural Officer, City Design Group (sender's and recipient's names redacted), and revealedin response to a Freedom of Information request: "It may save some public comments to state onthe application that BCC Tree Officers have agreed to the pruning specification".Such prejudged agreement clearly negates the value of this planning consultation process,suggesting that little or no value is placed on valid objections raised in public comments. That issurely undemocratic, and wrong.

The 22 July 2020 email also asserts, without any objective justification, that this drastic pruning"will not impact the amenity value of the tree, avoid damage to pavilion and balance canopy".I do not agree that the result of the proposed "crown lift" would be a "balanced canopy" within thenatural contours of a mature ash tree.

This application's implied concern for the well-being of this tree and the safety of those using thefootpath rings hollow to me when viewed in the light of Cotham School's previous actions andattitudes towards not only the heritage amenities of Stoke Lodge but also the local community wholove this parkland and have a long history of taking positive action to protect and enhance its floraand fauna.

I do not understand why BCC Tree Officers would agree to prioritise avoiding damage to analready derelict building over the welfare of a healthy tree and its amenity to the community.

So I urge you to reject this application, or at least to permit only the very limited work that isgenuinely necessary to ensure the health and well-being of the tree, the biodiversity, and thecommunity who love Stoke Lodge. And to monitor closely and carefully the methods used byCotham School and its contractors, in order to avoid enabling them to add to the damage theyhave already caused at Stoke Lodge Playing Fields, and to this beautiful tree.

on 2020-09-01   OBJECT

In your (BCC's) Tree Management Policies, you have this statement:'We do not prune or remove a council owned tree to stop the nuisance of overhanging branches.1. You have a Common Law right to cut back any branches encroaching onto your property; this isonly from the point where they cross over onto your boundary.2. Before you consider doing any works to a tree(s) you should find out if it is protected by a TreePreservation Order or are within a Conservation Area. If the trees are protected, you will need togain consent ... .'

For the above reasons alone I feel this application should be rejected. Furthermore, the land isleased by Cotham (for free) and not owned - so surely this provides even less grounds/'rights' fortree pruning.

This tree is very visible from my back garden. Trimming to 8m above the ground will leave the treelooking absolutely ridiculous. From a visual perspective I object to having to view a defiled treeand unattractive shed, instead of what is currently a beautiful - and protected - tree.

on 2020-09-01   SUPPORT

Please! This is an ash tree of which there are more than enough locally and nationallywhich are not suffering from die back. There are far more important issues to be considered thanpruning a tree. Let Cotham improve the safety of people on a footpath and preserve the health ofthe tree!!!

on 2020-09-01   SUPPORT

Please! This is an ash tree of which there are more than enough locally and nationallywhich are not suffering from die back. There are far more important issues to be considered thanpruning a tree. Let Cotham improve the safety of people on a footpath and preserve the health ofthe tree!!!

on 2020-08-30   OBJECT

It beggars belief that less than a year after being instructed to perform mitigating actionsto repair the damage to the roots of this tree or face prosecution that Cotham School's caretakerNathan Allen seeks to do further unnecessary works to this tree. No reason is given for the worksbeyond the dead branch and the extra works should therefore be denied without further ado. Thistree needs time to recover from the damage that the applicant himself oversaw to its root systemin the last quarter of last year. To do that the tree needs its leaves intact and as many as possibleto ensure that it can fully recover from the atrocious act of wanton damage he perpetrated on it.This is a TPO tree because it is so beautiful in its outline being a fine example of an ash tree or itwould not have been given its duly awarded status. To change the outline as applied for would bean atrocity.We have ash trees dying in droves across the country. To perform unnecessary surgery on anyone of them whilst increasing its risk of becoming diseased is criminal. The unnecessary, noreason given, works should simply be denied in order to protect not just one of Bristol's assets butthe nation's.May I suggest that ONLY permission to address the dead branch be given. Any further work donethat permission is not given for should result in criminal charges as was warned last year. Theapplicant can apply again, and next time provide actual reasons, say in 5 years after which timewe may know whether or not he has already done irreparable damage to the root system.One is very concerned that a large number of objection documents appear to have gone missingfrom this application and are not accessible. Most notably that from Bristol Tree Forum. Further,council notices regards this application have "gone missing" from around Stoke Lodge.One is also concerned that every application made by Cotham School, and this applicant inparticular, have been received and validated the same day even when the applicant previously

claimed ownership of OUR assets in one application. Is due care and attention being given toapplications from the school or their agents?I agree with Bristol Tree Forum that "Cotham school be disqualified from future care of any tree onthis site". That applies doubly to this specific applicant for wilfully and knowingly causing damageto this tree twice last year. Once digging through its roots with a mechanical digger and interferingwith its root when erecting the fence. I urge you to give this tree time and ability to recover.One also notes that planning application for new changing rooms was rejected by the highestauthority in the land and the school's new application for funding to refurbish the changing roomshas subsequently been rejected by the Educational Skills and Funding Agency. If public money isnot to be used for the refurbishment of the changing rooms and the tower that a single tree branchis rubbing against appears to be using so much consternation then it is private money of acompany (Cotham Academy company number 07732888) and the proposed works then haveeverything to do with company profit and obvious motivation to have clear CCTV vision as stated"to allow the security camera to view the gateway" which vision will also encroach on a publicfootpath and people's gardens. This application has less than nothing to do with safeguardingBristol's TPO asset. The applicant is free to move the camera and provide the requisite notices.Please do the right thing, apply BCCs own policies, and dismiss this application.

on 2020-08-29   OBJECT

This tree is subject to a Tree Preservation order and is healthy and venerable. The onlywork that should be done must be focussed solely on ensuring the health and viability of the tree.The case stated that it offers a Health and Safety issue has been poorly made. The tree wasplanted long before the current wrecked, disused and dangerously disused pavilion was built.Damage has been caused to the roots of the tree in the recent past by the unauthorised use of amechanical digger to lay a cable. The proposed tree work will be potentially harmful quite apartfrom ruining the aesthetic beauty and habitat value of this venerable part of our local natural world.Lastly, the whole issue of the parkland is subject to a TVG application and the complex ofapplications for security cameras and so forth associated with Cotham School, their lease andattitude to the parkland. These things should be considered in the round and not piecemeal.

on 2020-08-25   OBJECT

Re. Application 20/03288 I am concerned about the extent of proposed work. It wouldseem unnecessary to carry out quite as much tree surgery in order to deal with two minorproblems which may not even present any danger to persons or property. The fact that a previousapplication (19/04039) was made to remove lower branches so that CCTV cameras could have aclear sight reinforces the view expressed by the Bristol tree forum, that "Cotham school bedisqualified from future care of any tree on this site".

on 2020-08-25   OBJECT

Bristol Tree Forum have submitted a very detailed objections which explains thetechnicalities of this in far greater detail than my knowledge allows me to.

No reasons are given for the extensive work proposed and I could wax lyrical about how I feelabout Cotham Academy's record in damaging TPO trees on Stoke Lodge. Twice a mechanicaldigger had been used within the root zone of this actual tree despite the school knowing full wellthat this is not permitted, so I fear for any work that they undertake within range of any tree!

I suspect that this application has more to do with visibility for the CCTV camera than any safetyconcerns or the health and preservation of this 100+ year old Ash. So surely, if this is the case, theeasiest solution would be to re-site the camera. (My question of why on earth they feel the needfor CCTV cameras at all is another issue! )

The tree is healthy and does not need cutting back for safety reasons. Would it not be better toremove the chimney of the derelict pavilion rather than chop off branches of a healthy tree which Ifear will not remain healthy for long if this work is permitted? if there is a minor problem with thistree, or any other on the site, should it not be determined by and resolved by the Council's treeofficers not put into the unsteady hands of Cothham Academy. The ancient oak at Cheyne Roadentrance recently had a large branch break off in a storm and the Council's tree officers dealt withthat with care and concern for the life of the tree, and for the wildlife that it is home to, doing onlythe work necessary to make it safe.

There are TVG and public right of way applications in process so surely no more planning

applications from CA should be considered before this is decided.

I object strongly to this request. and I am really hoping that as this is a valuable Ash tree with TPOstatus, you will indeed protect it and turn down this application!

on 2020-08-24   OBJECT

I am objecting to the application to crown lift the impressive ash tree close to the derelict pavilionwithin the curtilage of Stoke Lodge on Shirehampton Road. The reasons for my objection are :-1. The ash tree has a natural shape, is a tree covered by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) and isunder the care of the Bristol City Council on Bristol City Council owned land. My belief is that thecouncil do not crown lift a tree under TPO unless the tree is severely damaged. This tree is notdamaged.2. The ash tree has recently but subjected to root damage by the applicant, Cotham School, whena mechanical digger cut through the roots while digging a trench. The school was forced to makeremedial action or face prosecution. This applicant has no regard to the natural amenity value ofStoke Lodge Parkland or this ash tree in particular.3. The tower associated with the pavilion is noted as being rubbed by a branch of the tree. Surelya tree of the age and size of this ash tree should be given far more consideration than the derelictpavilion with no planning permission. The applicant should seek professional advice on how toinsulate the tree branch from further rubbing caused by the tower.4. The mention of the view of the gateway at West Dene by the security camera seems to suggestthat the works to the ash tree (and other TPO trees mentioned in the tree management reportattached to the application) are needed by the school to improve the security camera view. I donot remember seeing a planning application in relation to the installation of such a securitycamera. The applicant should move the camera to a lower more sensible position looking the gateif this needs to be viewed. The council should oppose ANY cutting back of the ash tree whenmoving the camera is the obvious solution.5. The pavilion is surrounded by safety fencing such that there seems little danger that any

branch, rubbed and damaged by the tower, when falling would be a danger to the personsenjoying the parkland. The ash tree should not be cut back nor crown lifted when no danger exists.6. In summer the ash tree is in leaf and the school do not use the playing field. In winter and springwhen the school can be expected to utilise the playing field the ash tree will have lost its leavesand yield a better view of the gate and hence any school children who might be leaving the field bythe gate. The works to the ash tree should not be necessary as nature will naturally provide a viewfrom the camera that the school requires.7. The intention to crown lift this ash tree to a height of 8 metres cannot possibly be for the benefitof an attractive and healthy protected tree that is of significant amenity value to the parkland. Thecouncil should reject this application that far exceeds the minimum necessary for any health andsafety risk that this ash tree may currently present to those lawfully using Stoke Lodge Parkland.8. The whole of Stoke Lodge is currently the subject of an application for Town & Village Greenstatus. If this was granted the applicant may well no longer consider such works to the ash treenecessary. The application for works to the ash tree should therefore be rejected by the counciluntil such time as the TVG status has been determined to avoid any unnecessary damage to theash tree.

In summary I strongly object to the application for such significant works to the ash tree with aTPO apparently for the benefit of a security camera (without planning consent) on a tower of aderelict pavilion that is not in current use by the applicant when such works could severelydamage the health of the ash tree and would certainly reduce the amenity value of the 180 plusyear old Stoke Lodge parkland.

on 2020-08-24   OBJECT

Re: 20/03288/VP | Ash (T8 on plan, part of G7 on TPO 1192)

The Applicant's (Cotham School) request for tree surgery states that one small broken branch overhangs the footpath inside the playing field, and that one of the limbs that overhangs the pavilion and rubs against the building, yet a request for a Crown lift to 8m on the Pavilion side is being made. Why remove half the lower portion of this TPO tree because of a small broken branch and a branch that is rubbing?

There is no mention of danger or risk of injury and so has nothing to do with public or school children's safety.

Given Application 19 / 04039 (no longer in Planning Portal) was to remove many of the lower branches, and crown lift to clear the side and top of the tower, to allow for installation of CCTV cameras, this application looks to achieve a similar clearing, trying to justify it by two small annoying features of an otherwise magnificent tree that has no structural or physiological faults as identified in the application.

This ash tree is a long standing, highly prominent feature of the area, as are many of the other glorious TPO trees in this now rare parkland. It can be seen from all around the upper part of Stoke Lodge Playing Fields and has high amenity value.

The tree is a healthy and attractive ash with TPO protection. The tree forms part of the setting of a listed building, Stoke Lodge, and assists in masking a very ugly pavilion tower and blending it into the landscape. Severe crown lifting of the tree would be detrimental to the setting of this listed building. This is not 'management' activity being

undertaken for the benefit of a protected tree, but unnecessary action being proposed at the whim of the applicant who has already shown wanton disregard for the trees on the playing fields - note the signs those who look after the Arboretum have posted, asking the school's contractors not to park heavy vehicles under the trees or drive over roots...and look at the total disregard for the 'drip line' when they erected the fencing.

Cotham School has recently felled and poisoned a number of trees growing around the building, even though its plans may change depending on the availability of funding and (according to its previous statements) on the outcome of current TVG registration processes. The school has stated that if the playing fields are registered as a TVG, it will cease to use them - in which case a 100+ year old tree might be decimated for no purpose at all.

The tree management specification attached to the application also proposes to cut back other trees within this group 'to allow the security camera to view the gateway'. As that work does not form part of the current application, if any works under this application are permitted to go ahead they must not include any work to or cutting back of other trees without a further application and appropriate permission. This comment may reveal another motivation for proposing a substantial crown-lift of the ash tree: namely, to clear the sight-lines of the CCTV camera, mounted on the pavilion tower. There is no reason why a protected tree should be chopped about on the whim of the applicant to improve their CCTV footage.

The school's own ecology report dated July 2018 notes that there is moderate to high potential for foraging and commuting bats in this area and the tree may also have shallow holes, crevices and dense growths of ivy that could be used by roosting bats. Several species of bat (including common and soprano pipistrelle, noctule and Leisler's bats) are regularly seen flying in and out of trees in this area. Bats are a protected species and their habitat should not be disturbed to suit the tenant's whim.

The proposal to remove all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towards and above the building would brutalise, disfigure and ruin the proportions of this impressive tree, turning it into a ridiculous and entirely unnatural shape and significantly reducing its amenity value.

I am advised by a tree specialist that such disproportioning' of the tree would actually potentially create a significant threat and risk to neighbouring properties by making the tree severely unbalanced, thus creating potential (and entirely unnecessary) liability for the Council. It would undoubtedly damage the tree's long-term prospects.

This tree has already been subject to invasive works by Cotham School when it used a mini-digger to cut a trench through its roots in late August 2019. The school was required to undertake remediation works following this event in order to avoid prosecution, and yet repeated the same action in June 2020. It may be years before damage to the tree from the severing of significant roots becomes visible - further major shocks in the form of the removal of up to 50% of the tree could be fatal to it.

Given that the tree is healthy, the proposed works would be entirely negative -

ecologically, aesthetically, and to the tree itself, and there is no apparent reason to carry them out, that would justify such damage to this protected tree. Residence on Stoke Paddock road know this as their application to trim overhanging branches from TPO trees has been rejected.

The application states that the work has been discussed with a BCC tree officer and implies that the officer considers the works to be reasonable and required. It is not clear whether this is true or on what basis the officer would have reached and provided such a conclusion, given (a) the evidence available and (b) that this appears to prejudge the consultation process with the local community, including affected neighbours.

Also, there is no justification for removing multiple branches of a healthy and protected tree, to allow a camera that could be placed elsewhere, to monitor a gate that may soon have to be removed.

on 2020-08-21   OBJECT

In the application by Cotham School to carry out the work to this TPO tree no reason isgiven to justify the necessity which would satisfy conditions applied to trees with Tree ProtectionOrders.This application does not show management activity being undertaken for the benefit of aprotected tree, but unnecessary and detrimental action being proposed by Cotham School to ahealthy Ash tree with TPO protection.Cotham School application state there is no damage being caused to the pavilion or anyneighbouring property,so where is the reason to spoil the shape of this tree?No evidence is provided of any reason for the proposed crown lifting even though this is requiredby the application form. No reason is given for cutting the lower branches on the Ebenezer Laneside. The tree is healthy and there is no damage being caused, what possible justification is therefor removing significant numbers of branches?What is proposed is substantially detrimental to the tree's appearance and the contribution itprovides to the listed Stoke Lodge and parkland.The proposal to remove 'all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towardsand above the building' would completely change the shape of an Ash tree into something quiteun-natural looking and like a lollipop and would make the tree top heavy and unbalanced.Ash trees in the country are already suffering from a fatal disease, therefore it seems totally wrongto threaten the health of a perfectly healthy tree wantonly.There is no good reason why a protected tree should be deformed to look un-natural on the whimof the applicant to improve their CCTV footage.The application states that the work has been discussed with a BCC tree officer and implies thatthe officer considers the works to be reasonable and required. Surely this is inappropriate and a

prejudgment of the caseI agree with all other objections put forward by interested and concerned parties in addition to thearguments put forward by Bristol Tree Forum. For all these reasons this application should bedismissed

on 2020-08-21   OBJECT

I believe the main reason that Cotham School wish to have the T8 Ash tree cut andcrown-lifted is that it doesn't fit with their requirement for clear air space within and around thederelict pavilion, its associated brick service tower and, crucially, its high level cctv installation.

Nowhere is a reason given for removal of the limbs/branches that overhang the pavilion, otherthan the single limb/branch that is rubbing against the brickwork - which itself is undamaged.

If this is the only limb/branch needing attention then why do the 3 lower limbs/branches thatoverhang the footpath outside the playing field need to be removed?

To make the tree's appearance aesthetically 'pleasing'?

To balance the effect of the crown-lifting?

Or just to provide unobstructed cctv coverage of the West Dene entrance gate - as also shown asthe reason for remedial work to the G2 holly, dogwood and elder?

The proposed height of the crown-lift over a derelict building exceeds the councils ownrecommendation for highway trees (5.5m) and footpath trees (2.5m), none of which wouldnormally include the removal of large limbs/branches.

The school has an unenviable reputation in its previous poor management of trees and thisapplication is an extension of that reputation.

This is not an application for tree management and safety; it's an application not-so-stealthilyincrease security management of a derelict building owned by BCC, leased to the school but withno permission for any development work.

The application must be rejected.

on 2020-08-21   OBJECT

There is no justification for carry out the works as specified on the Ash tree. The shapeand health of the tree could be significantly affected by these actions. The reason that CothamSchool have applied to do these works is to create a view of the gate from the security camera.I would like to point out that the view is obscured during the summer, when school activities on thefield are minimised. In the winter when the Ash tree sheds its leaves the view of the gate will beimproved.I would also like to point out that the camera was erected without planning permission and soshould be removed.

on 2020-08-21   OBJECT

Given Cotham School's track record in lack of care for the trees on Stoke Lodge Park, Iwould strongly ask that any work deemed necessary to this Ash tree is carried out only on theadvice of the Tree Officer, who is best placed to advise on any work required to maintain thehealth and the appearance of the tree. And not, on the perceived needs of the school which so farseems to view trees as an inconvenience.

on 2020-08-20   OBJECT

I wish to object to the proposal to undertake severe pruning of this very well establishedand quite elderly but healthy tree for the following reasons. It is at the moment serving a veryuseful purpose of screening from view a very ugly brick boiler chimney, when lifting by theproposed amount will bring that extremely utilitarian building into full view. The only remedial actneeded is the removal of one branch overhanging the pavilion roof, but ONLY if the applicantstruly have the money to refurbish the building. According to their own governors' minutes they donot have such resources. The work entails balancing by removing growth over a neighbour'sgarden, when the neighbour has, to my understanding, not given agreement to this.Most importantly, whilst there is risk of ash die-back in this country, it is extremely hazardous toexpose multiple cut ends of branches and risk infection from this or other diseases. This tree is animportant bat roost and feeding site so has the vectors that might aid such infection.Everything the applicant needs for CCTV coverage of the gate can be achieved by moving thecamera, leaving the tree to continue to survive.

on 2020-08-20  

The welfare of existing trees and the growth of the tree canopy are key environmental goals of the Council.This application has generated considerable public feedback and is proving to be controversial. Unless a compromise can be agreed I believe the final decision should be made in public by the DC Committee. By requesting to refer this application I understand that I am expected to submit a further statement* as

part of the Public Forum section of the relevant Committee meeting and attend the Committee meeting. *Public Forum statements have to be with Democratic Services by Noon on the day before the Committee

meeting. Notes: 1. The application that you are referring, must relate to a site within your ward. An exception to this relates to

single member wards where referrals will be accepted from members from neighbouring wards when the ward member is not available. 2. The referral request must be received by Development Management no later than 7 days after the end of the published consultation period. This is shown for each application in Planning Online – see Important Dates tab. While there may be a number of different dates listed here, the date that applies will be the latest of the Expiry Dates for the neighbour and standard consultation,advertisement and site notice. This applies to the first round of consultation and does not include any re-consultation period. 3. You can only refer an application to a Development Control Committee for planning reasons i.e. not for reasons such as loss of view, effect on property values, private rights, boundary disputes, or construction noise. It is not intended that a request from a constituent is simply “passed on” but that you are supporting the views expressed in this referral, and will attend the committee meeting. 4. The referred application will be considered by the next available committee meeting in order to assist us in determining planning applications in accordance with Government performance targets. Therefore, it could be considered by either of the DC committees. 5. Early contact with the case officer is recommended in order to establish the reasons for any potential referral and to explore potential solutions to the situation.

Councillor referral form

on 2020-08-19   OBJECT

A Freedom of Information request has revealed that a letter from BCC stated that(quote) "it may save some public comment to state on the application that BCC tree officers haveagreed to the pruning specification, which will not affect the amenity value of the tree, avoiddamage to the pavilion and balance canopy etc..." I am concerned about what has been writtenthere. What does this mean that they have agreed? I cannot see how the proposed reduction of amagnificent healthy old tree to the shape of a toilet brush does not affect its amenity value. Apartfrom its sheer beauty it is not only disguising a view of a derelict eyesore of a building but is alsoportraying the iconic shape of a mature healthy ash tree that surely should be preserved. Damageto this tree's long-term life is certain when a huge percentage of its growth is chopped off - whichwould be added to the damage caused on two separate occasions by diggers cutting trenchesthrough the roots close to this same tree which , it is hoped, the tree will be able to overcome.As this ash tree is sound and healthy, no evidence has been stated for the need for such invasiveand excessive pruning which if carried out would make the introduction of fatal pathogens almostinevitable. The application states that there is no damage being caused to property so brushingthe ugly tower attached to the pavilion is not a reasonable excuse. The quoted 'Managementactivity' is a joke when one considers all the damage that has been wilfully caused to other trees atStoke Lodge including those with TPOs e.g. digging in the roots of multiple other trees and pouringin concrete for fence posts; no impediment made to the grass-mowing company who regularlyhave parked heavy vehicles actually underneath the canopy of veteran oak trees; allowing mowingclose to the trunks of these oaks; and the snagging and breaking off of small branches by a tractorbeing driven under them - all this despite warnings, the clear witnessing of events, and evidence ofphotos being provided to the leaseholder who is the applicant in the current request to lop the tree.There is in addition no reason stated for lifting the crown so drastically. The sheer effrontery of

wanting to cut the branches on the Ebenezer Lane side because they overhang someone'sgarden despite the garden owner not wanting them cut off shows utter contempt to anyconsideration of the beauty and extraordinary value of a healthy much-admired tree with theexcuse of 'balancing'. It has been stated nationally that we must treasure healthy ash treesbecause of the encroachment of ash dieback disease.The School acknowledged in 2018 that there is a colony of bats that forage in this tree. It has nowbeen established that by monitoring electronically the position and forage-locating noise of batsthat there are probably two quite rare species that use this tree apart from the small pipistrelles. Ihave always understood that disturbing bats is illegal especially in this case when, prior to theprevious failed application to rebuild a huge new pavilion, the ivy on the pavilion tower which wasalso a bat roost was cut at the base so that the ivy quickly died. The law states 'Anyone who kills,injures or disturbs bats, obstructs access to bat roosts or damages or disturbs bat roosts, evenwhen unoccupied by bats, is guilty of an offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, theCountryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 and the Conservation (Natural Habitats, &c.) Regulations2007.'The proposals in this application do not conform at all to BCC's own stated policy. The tree is not asafety threat and has caused no damage. In addition, there is no evidence that the School has thefinance in place or is about to start on refurbishment of the pavilion which is in such a bad statebecause of the total lack of any maintenance and repair during the nine years since thecommencement of the lease.We know from a previous withdrawn application that the School wished to chop parts of the treebecause it interfered with their CCTV camera. If they really wish to keep a watch on (mainly) localresidents or future sports teams or school pupils who enter the West Dene gate then they caneasily move the camera. The CCTV camera is still there so that hasn't changed but of course isnot mentioned in the present application.In conclusion it is important to note that we have observed disregard for health and safetyregarding the dire state of the perimeter path around the field. So a statement regarding safetywith regard to the ash tree is unbelievable.

on 2020-08-19   OBJECT

I strongly object to this proposal. From my observations as a neighbour to Stoke Lodge PlayingFields, I see that one small, broken branch of this TPO tree overhangs a footpath and one of itslimbs that overhangs the pavilion rubs against the building. This derelict edifice is fenced off frompublic use and, in any case, is riddled with asbestos and because of an active Town and VillageGreen application is unlikely to be refurbished any time soon. The tree, in my view, has verystrong amenity value because it is set in the parkland in such a way that it can be viewed, from adistance, from three sides in all its glorious magnificence.

Others have written at length about the proposed desecration of this magnificent tree. I refer, inparticular, to the objections very succinctly set out by The Bristol Tree Forum dated July 2020.If the real purpose of this application, not referred to in this application by Cotham School, is toallow the CCTV camera greater capacity as its viewing power is currently blocked by a TPO tree,then why not move the camera? The gate the camera is trained on may well have to be removedsoon anyway because, as stated above, there are TVG and Public Right of Way applicationsunder current consideration.

I find it hard to believe that Council Officers will willingly allow this beautiful, old Ash tree to be cutinto a weird shape just because a much simpler solution is not entertained. In short there is nojustification for removing multiple branches of the Ash tree, and therefore this application shouldbe rejected.

on 2020-08-19   OBJECT

I strongly object to this proposal. From my observations as a neighbour to Stoke Lodge PlayingFields, I see that one small, broken branch of this TPO tree overhangs a footpath and one of itslimbs that overhangs the pavilion rubs against the building. This derelict edifice is fenced off frompublic use and, in any case, is riddled with asbestos and because of an active Town and VillageGreen application is unlikely to be refurbished any time soon. The tree, in my view, has verystrong amenity value because it is set in the parkland in such a way that it can be viewed, from adistance, from three sides in all its glorious magnificence.

Others have written at length about the proposed desecration of this magnificent tree. I refer, inparticular, to the objections very succinctly set out by The Bristol Tree Forum dated July 2020.If the real purpose of this application, not referred to in this application by Cotham School, is toallow the CCTV camera greater capacity as its viewing power is currently blocked by a TPO tree,then why not move the camera? The gate the camera is trained on may well have to be removedsoon anyway because, as stated above, there are TVG and Public Right of Way applicationsunder current consideration.

I find it hard to believe that Council Officers will willingly allow this beautiful, old Ash tree to be cutinto a weird shape just because a much simpler solution is not entertained. In short there is nojustification for removing multiple branches of the Ash tree, and therefore this application shouldbe rejected.

on 2020-08-19   OBJECT

In the application by Cotham School to carry out the work to this TPO tree no reason is given tojustify the necessity which would satisfy conditions applied to trees with Tree Protection Orders.This application does not show management activity being undertaken for the benefit of aprotected tree, but unnecessary and detrimental action being proposed by Cotham School to ahealthy Ash tree with TPO protection.Cotham School application state there is no damage being caused to the pavilion or anyneighbouring property,so where is the reason to spoil the shape of this tree?No evidence is provided of any reason for the proposed crown lifting even though this is requiredby the application form. No reason is given for cutting the lower branches on the Ebenezer Laneside. The tree is healthy and there is no damage being caused, what possible justification is therefor removing significant numbers of branches?What is proposed is substantially detrimental to the tree's appearance and the contribution itprovides to the listed Stoke Lodge and parkland.The proposal to remove 'all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towardsand above the building' would completely change the shape of an Ash tree into something quiteun-natural looking and like a lollipop and would make the tree top heavy and unbalanced.Ash trees in the country are already suffering from a fatal disease, therefore it seems totally wrongto threaten the health of a perfectly healthy tree wantonly.There is no good reason why a protected tree should be deformed to look un-natural on the whimof the applicant to improve their CCTV footage.The application states that the work has been discussed with a BCC tree officer and implies thatthe officer considers the works to be reasonable and required. Surely this is inappropriate and a

prejudgment of the caseI agree with all other objections put forward by interested and concerned parties in addition to thearguments put forward by Bristol Tree Forum. For all these reasons this application should bedismissed

on 2020-08-19   OBJECT

If there is a problem with this tree surely it should be resolved by the Council's treeofficer. It stands on Council land which is only leased to Cotham and is subject to a treepreservation order. Cotham has shown little interest in preserving the trees on the site and it andits contractors have appeared quite negligent in looking after those with tree preservation orderson them (see report of Bristol Tree Forum).One suspects that Cotham's main interest is to put up yet another intrusive CCTV camera toinvade the privacy of residents exercising their rights under the lease Cotham has with BCC.If anything needs to be done with any trees on that land do not leave it to Cotham.

on 2020-08-18   OBJECT

I write to object to the planning application outlined above on the following grounds:

1. The tree is healthy and attractive, and protected by a current TPO. The proposed action is un-necessary, and far too severe, in view of the fact that there is no damage to property orsurrounding fences etc. The overhanging branch is not a problem to the owner of the gardenconcerned.

2. One branch is reportedly rubbing , and if this really is a problem then please simply prune backthis branch, and allow the rest of the tree to flourish as it has done for the last 100 years, providinga wonderful backdrop to the area. The building itself is derelict! Surely no need to protect it -nobody can access the site anyway as it is all fenced off.

3. I understand that Bristol City Council originally deemed the proposal excessive. I totally agreewith this standpoint. To cut back the crown in such a draconian way would result in a very odd-looking specimen and might prove detrimental to its long term health.

4. If the CCTV view is obstructed by the tree, surely the school could re-site the camera ratherthan attempt to carry out such invasive pruning of this fine old tree. It is notable that CothamSchool showed no respect for the roots of the tree when driving diggers across the area during theinstallation of the fencing and cable trench. This sudden interest in its height and shape makesone suspect their true motives. I don't see why they need a camera there at all.

5. We believe that the tree is a haven for our local rare bat population, and interfering with its

height and the complexity of its branches would certainly upset the bats, and not be conducive totheir long term well-being.... a protected species.

Please, Bristol City Council, turn down this application, and apply your publicly stated treeprotection policy to this fine old tree. We are relying on your common sense and good judgement!

on 2020-08-18   OBJECT

Cotham School are seeking permission to crown lift the Ash to 8 metres mainly becausea branch is touching the pavilion chimney.

Given that the pavilion is no longer in use it would be wiser to remove the chimney rather thanspoil a beautiful old Ash tree.

If they wish to keep the camera for surveillance purposes (goodness knows what they wish tosurvey) they should find somewhere else to site it.

on 2020-08-18   OBJECT

Having read the details of the proposed works it seems rather extreme if the purpose isto address the broken branch and the branch rubbing against the pavilion.The rest of the work, e.g. the crown lift and removal of lower branches, is NOT required and I amalarmed that such drastic work has been proposed for this mature tree.The tree should be treated with respect and only the minimum work required, for the reasonsstated on the application, be carried out.The work proposed looks remarkably similar to a previous application made (Application andApplication 19 / 04039) the purpose of which was to allow the installation of CCTV.The current application has had the contemptuous reason for works - "CCTV installation" -removed.Based on the reasons for work stated on this application, only the minimum possible work shouldbe carried out on this magnificent TPO.

on 2020-08-17   OBJECT

This proposal has, with the possible exception of the rubbing branch, nothingwhatsoever to do with ensuring the long-term viability of the tree or mitigating any imminent healthand safety risk. No evidence is provided of any reason or purpose for the proposed severe crownlifting, even though a reason is required by the application form. The tree is a healthy andattractive ash with TPO protection. No structural or physiological faults have been identified in theapplication. This is not 'management' activity being undertaken for the benefit of a protected tree,but largely unnecessary action being proposed at the whim of the applicant.

The application specifically states that there is no damage being caused to property (the pavilionor any neighbouring property). Given that the tree is healthy and there is no damage beingcaused, what possible justification is there for cutting significant numbers of branches off? Theproposed works would be entirely negative - ecologically, aesthetically, and to the tree itself, andthere is no apparent reason to carry them out that would justify such damage to this protectedtree. BCC's own policy therefore requires that all other elements of the proposal should berejected.

The scope of the work also appears to have escalated during discussions between Bosky Treesand BCC tree officers (see below), leading to an apparently irrational proposal to brutalise a TPOtree through severe crown-lifting, even though only one branch is identified by the school ascreating any kind of issue. The one branch that has been identified as a possible problem could bepruned back without these other consequences. If there is no major crown lift on the pavilion side,then there is no need to hack off branches on the other side to 'balance the crown'.

No 'actionable nuisance' is being caused by the branches of the tree identified for crown lifting, nordo they prevent 'reasonable enjoyment' of the property (a pavilion which the school has allowed tobecome derelict). In the absence of any evidence that proposed works to a protected tree arenecessary for a legitimate reason, an application should be refused - this applies to each elementof this proposal with the possible exception of the rubbing branch.

From correspondence disclosed under FOI, it is clear that BCC as owner of the trees said theschool's proposal was excessive. Ben Rose of Bosky Trees thought this was because he hadsuggested cutting off one (1) limb on the Ebenezer Lane side of the tree (email 24 June 2020). Hisreasoning is that the branch is growing through a hedge and overhangs a neighbouring garden.However, the neighbours concerned object strongly to its removal, and BCC policy states that 'Wedo not prune or remove a council owned tree to stop the nuisance of overhanging branches.'

Mr Rose's revised tree management specification (attached to the application) then refers to two(2) overhanging limbs and the application proposes chopping off three (3)! Given that'overhanging' is not a justifiable reason for cutting off a branch from a TPO tree, the only othersuggestion from Bosky Trees is that removal of one limb would balance the crown lift on the otherside - but since the application proposes removing three limbs rather than one, presumably thecrown lift on the pavilion side is now even more severe than the original proposal - which, as weknow, BCC as landowner judged to be excessive! It is very difficult to reach the view that anyoneinvolved in these discussions is taking the duty to protect the tree seriously.

In relation to the proposed crown-lift - no justification is given anywhere for cutting off every branchthat originates below 8m on the pavilion side of the tree. The application requires a reason andnone is given - this part of the proposal should be dismissed without further consideration. It wouldresult in a severely reshaped, unnatural tree, shaped more like a lollipop than an ash tree. Itbeggars belief that a BCC tree officer, in his email of 22 July, would suggest that residents be toldthat crown-lifting to such a substantial extent would not affect the amenity value of the tree. We allhave the common sense to see that this is obviously untrue (and it contradicts another BCCofficer's view in a separate recent application that unduly heavy pruning of an ash tree hadreduced its amenity value).

According to the school, in both the application and its email of 8 July 2020, the branch that isrubbing on the pavilion tower is its main concern. The school suggests that it is concerned aboutthe risk of injury if the branch falls due to lack of maintenance. We have some doubts about thesincerity of this claim, given that (a) the pavilion is derelict and unused, and is surrounded withfencing to keep the public out, so there is no one around to be injured; and (b) the school hasapparently no concern at all about humans falling on the paths outside the perimeter fence due toits ongoing lack of maintenance throughout the autumn and winter. We also note the school'sprevious use of a mini-digger to carve a trench through the roots of this tree (twice), resulting inthe Council requiring it to take action in October 2019 to mitigate the damage caused to the tree orface prosecution. The health of this tree has not been an obvious concern to the school to date

and we therefore rely on BCC in its capacity as landowner, and on its tree officers, to exerciseparticular caution in controlling the school's actions.

It may be the case that one branch needs to be pruned to avoid further damage to the tree;however, it is a surprise to see a BCC tree officer state that 'clearly the tree needs pruning awayfrom the pavilion'. What is the basis for this statement? The pavilion is derelict and there is nocertainty that it will be refurbished as the school does not currently have consent to use publicmoney for this purpose, and it previously told the Funding Agency that refurbishment would not beviable or cost-effective. So why does the tree need to be pruned away from the building? Currentlythe roof of the building is lightly brushed by leaves on the branch that is rubbing against the tower.Even if that qualifies as an 'actionable nuisance' (really?), the issue would be solved if that onerubbing branch is to be pruned back. There is no justification given anywhere for crown-lifting thetree to 8m. BCC as landowner indicated that the school's proposal was excessive, and yet itseems to have been made more, rather than less, extreme (judging by the increased number oflimbs proposed to be removed on the footpath side).

And yet despite all this, a BCC tree officer has suggested (email 22 July) that the crown-lift 'wouldnot impact the amenity value of the tree'. I absolutely disagree with this comment. The ash treeconcerned is a highly prominent feature of the area, being seen from all around the upper part ofStoke Lodge Playing Fields. The crown-lifting element of the proposal would ruin this impressivetree, turning it into a ridiculous and entirely unnatural shape and significantly reducing its amenityvalue. It would undoubtedly damage the tree's long-term prospects, which have already beenthreatened by the school's previous actions, mentioned above. The tree forms part of the setting ofa listed building, Stoke Lodge, and assists in masking a very ugly pavilion tower and blending itinto the landscape. Severe crown lifting of the tree would be detrimental to the setting of this listedbuilding.

In addition to the above, the school's own ecology report dated July 2018 notes that there ismoderate to high potential for foraging and commuting bats in this area and the tree may alsohave shallow holes, crevices and dense growths of ivy that could be used by roosting bats.Several species of bat (including common and soprano pipistrelle, noctule and Leisler's bats) areregularly seen flying in and out of trees in this area. Bats are a protected species and their habitatshould not be disturbed to suit the tenant's whim.

Finally, on the reasons underlying the proposal: as already stated, no reason is given for why mostof the works proposed in this application are necessary. It may be that reasons have beendiscussed behind the scenes with BCC tree officers to persuade them that the works are'reasonable and required' but these are not apparent from the application and therefore must bediscounted.

If the suggestion is that the crown-lifting would assist with Cotham School's planned'refurbishment' of the pavilion, the application does not say so or provide any evidence of why

such significant detriment to a protected tree is justified by any supposed advantage to any futurebuilding works. In any case, there is no certainty that any redevelopment or refurbishment of thepavilion building is actually to be carried out, due to the current absence of consent to use publicmoney for this purpose and also because the school has stated that if the playing fields areregistered as a TVG, it will cease to use them - in which case a 100+ year old tree might bedecimated for no purpose at all. The results of the TVG applications may potentially be knownwithin as little as 12 months so it is not appropriate to approve major crown-lifting work (or theremoval of other limbs to 'balance the crown') now.

The tree management specification attached to the application also proposes to cut back a groupof smaller trees next to the ash tree (labelled G2 on the plan) 'to allow the security camera to viewthe gateway'. Is this the true motivation for proposing a substantial crown-lift of the ash tree:namely, to clear the sight-lines of the CCTV camera, mounted on the pavilion tower, towards theWest Dene gate? The previous, cancelled, application to do works to the ash tree was explicitly forthe benefit of the school's CCTV - it has not mentioned CCTV in this application but the motivationappears to be the same. If so, it was the applicant's choice to install a camera in that position; itcould re-site it elsewhere. There is no reason why a protected tree should be chopped about onthe whim of the applicant to improve their CCTV footage. The fence and gate may have to beremoved anyway within a short period of time, depending on the outcome of the current Town orVillage Green and Public Right of Way applications. There is no justification for removing multiplebranches of a healthy and protected tree, to allow a camera that could be placed elsewhere, tomonitor a gate that may soon have to be removed.

In summary, the emails disclosed under FOI suggest that this fine, healthy ash tree is under threatfrom a snowballing proposal that both BCC as landowner and its tree officers have said was overthe top but now appear prepared to wave through, for motives that haven't been explained in theapplication. Bosky Trees was 'open to alternatives' but wasn't given any and has apparentlyincreased the severity of the proposed crown lift. The school is apparently only making a case forthe removal of one damaged branch, but has wrapped it up in a proposal to hack a beautiful oldash tree into a weird and unnatural shape. The tree isn't damaging anything - the application saysso. It is a healthy ash tree and needs to be protected, with actions taken for the good of the tree,not for other reasons. If it's in the way of a CCTV camera, then move the camera - otherwise everydeveloper that wants a TPO tree out of its way will know exactly where to start!

We need BCC to carefully and rationally apply its published policy in this case and to ensure thatTPO protection actually means something in the case of this notable, beautiful and healthy tree.

on 2020-08-17   OBJECT

I understand that the Ash tree identified in this application is owned by Bristol CityCouncil and that the Council Tree Management Policy therefore applies. I have read that policyand cannot identify anything within the application which would justify the proposed worksconsistent with the policy, with the exception of the single branch which rubs against the bricktower. It must follow that the proposed works, with the exception of pruning of that one branch, areinconsistent with Bristol City Council Tree Management policy.The Ash tree is a fine example of the species, a species under threat from Ash die-back disease,and as such it should be cared for and subjected to as little interference as possible consistentwith safety. The applicant has previously demonstrated a lack of care and a cavalier disregard forthe TPO on this tree, causing a trench to be dug by a mechanical excavator through its root zone,damaging large roots and resulting in enforcement action by Bristol City Council. The applicant'smotives should therefore be considered with appropriate scepticism.What are the applicant's motives for this extensive reshaping of this noble tree? What reason isgiven for turning the tree into a pleached freak? No reasons are given in the application save thatone branch is rubbing the tower and might fall. No justification is given for removal of any otherlimb of the tree yet the proposed works extend to the removal of all limbs originating beneath 8metres (26 feet) which reach towards the derelict pavilion and removal of the three lower limbswhich extend in the opposite direction. The scope of the works massively exceeds that necessaryto deal with the one rubbing branch.The only possible reasons for the application are the safeguarding of the derelict pavilion,preparation for its refurbishment, or (as is suggested in the applicant's supporting documents) theremoval of obstructions to the field of view available to the applicant's CCTV camera on the tower.Given that there is no certainty that the applicant will or is able to refurbish the pavilion, which the

school allowed to become derelict, any works to the tree would be premature. Certainty that thework on the pavilion will take place should be obtained before any attack on the tree is considered.If the reason is to improve the field of view for the CCTV, the resolution should be that the camerais moved, not that a tree of such significance is laid waste.Bristol Tree Forum (their comment dated 31 July 2020) have much more eloquently, and withmuch greater knowledge, set out the reasons that the applicant should not be allowed to ruin thistree. I endorse their objection and adopt their arguments.If this frivolous application is allowed, I fear that TPOs will be regarded as worthless anddevelopers will be able to rely on the precedent.I strongly urge that this application be rejected.

on 2020-08-16   OBJECT

This proposal has, with the possible exception of the rubbing branch, nothing whatsoever to do with ensuring the long-term viability of the tree or mitigating any imminent health and safety risk. No evidence is provided of any reason or purpose for the proposed severe crown lifting, even though a reason is required by the application form. The tree is a healthy and attractive ash with TPO protection. No structural or physiological faults have been identified in the application. This is not 'management' activity being undertaken for the benefit of a protected tree, but largely unnecessary action being proposed at the whim of the applicant.

The application specifically states that there is no damage being caused to property (the pavilion or any neighbouring property). Given that the tree is healthy and there is no damage being caused, what possible justification is there for cutting significant numbers of branches off? The proposed works would be entirely negative - ecologically, aesthetically, and to the tree itself, and there is no apparent reason to carry them out that would justify such damage to this protected tree. BCC's own policy therefore requires that all other elements of the proposal should be rejected.

The scope of the work also appears to have escalated during discussions between Bosky Trees and BCC tree officers (see below), leading to an apparently irrational proposal to brutalise a TPO tree through severe crown-lifting, even though only one branch is identified by the school as creating any kind of issue. The one branch that has been identified as a possible problem could be pruned back without these other consequences. If there is no major crown lift on the pavilion side, then there is no need to hack off branches on the other side to 'balance the crown'.

No 'actionable nuisance' is being caused by the branches of the tree identified for crown lifting, nor do they prevent 'reasonable enjoyment' of the property (a pavilion which the school has allowed to become derelict). In the absence of any evidence that proposed works to a protected tree are necessary for a legitimate reason, an application should be refused - this applies to each element of this proposal with the possible exception of the rubbing branch.

From correspondence disclosed under FOI, it is clear that BCC as owner of the trees said the school's proposal was excessive. Ben Rose of Bosky Trees thought this was because he had suggested cutting off one (1) limb on the Ebenezer Lane side of the tree (email 24 June 2020). His reasoning is that the branch is growing through a hedge and overhangs a neighbouring garden. However, the neighbours concerned object strongly to its removal, and BCC policy states that 'We do not prune or remove a council owned tree to stop the nuisance of overhanging branches.'

Mr Rose's revised tree management specification (attached to the application) then refers to two (2) overhanging limbs and the application proposes chopping off three (3)! Given that 'overhanging' is not a justifiable reason for cutting off a branch from a TPO tree, the only other suggestion from Bosky Trees is that removal of one limb would balance the crown lift on the other side - but since the application proposes removing three limbs rather than one, presumably the crown lift on the pavilion side is now even more severe than the original proposal - which, as we know, BCC as landowner judged to be excessive! It is very difficult to reach the view that anyone involved in these discussions is taking the duty to protect the tree seriously.

In relation to the proposed crown-lift - no justification is given anywhere for cutting off every branch that originates below 8m on the pavilion side of the tree. The application requires a reason and none is given - this part of the proposal should be dismissed without further consideration. It would result in a severely reshaped, unnatural tree, shaped more like a lollipop than an ash tree. It beggars belief that a BCC tree officer, in his email of 22 July, would suggest that residents be told that crown-lifting to such a substantial extent would not affect the amenity value of the tree. We all have the common sense to see that this is obviously untrue (and it contradicts another BCC officer's view in a separate recent application that unduly heavy pruning of an ash tree had reduced its amenity value).

According to the school, in both the application and its email of 8 July 2020, the branch that is rubbing on the pavilion tower is its main concern. The school suggests that it is concerned about the risk of injury if the branch falls due to lack of maintenance. We have some doubts about the sincerity of this claim, given that (a) the pavilion is derelict and unused, and is surrounded with fencing to keep the public out, so there is no one around to be injured; and (b) the school has apparently no concern at all about humans falling on the paths outside the perimeter fence due to its ongoing lack of maintenance throughout the autumn and winter. We also note the school's previous use of a mini-digger to carve a trench through the roots of this tree (twice), resulting in the Council requiring it to take action in October 2019 to mitigate the damage caused to the tree or face prosecution. The health of this tree has not been an obvious concern to the school to date and we therefore rely on BCC in its capacity as landowner, and on its tree

officers, to exercise particular caution in controlling the school's actions.

It may be the case that one branch needs to be pruned to avoid further damage to the tree; however, it is a surprise to see a BCC tree officer state that 'clearly the tree needs pruning away from the pavilion'. What is the basis for this statement? The pavilion is derelict and there is no certainty that it will be refurbished as the school does not currently have consent to use public money for this purpose. It is not clear that it will get consent for the refurbishment project, since it previously told the Funding Agency this would not be viable or cost-effective. So why does the tree need to be pruned away from the building? Currently the roof of the building is lightly brushed by leaves on the branch that is rubbing against the tower. Even if that qualifies as an 'actionable nuisance' (really?), the issue would be solved if that one rubbing branch is to be pruned back. There is no justification given anywhere for crown-lifting the tree to 8m. BCC as landowner indicated that the school's proposal was excessive, and yet it seems to have been made more, rather than less, extreme (judging by the increased number of limbs proposed to be removed on the footpath side).

And yet despite all this, a BCC tree officer has suggested (email 22 July) that the crown-lift 'would not impact the amenity value of the tree'. I absolutely disagree with this comment. The ash tree concerned is a highly prominent feature of the area, being seen from all around the upper part of Stoke Lodge Playing Fields. The crown-lifting element of the proposal would ruin this impressive tree, turning it into a ridiculous and entirely unnatural shape and significantly reducing its amenity value. It would undoubtedly damage the tree's long-term prospects, which have already been threatened by the school's previous actions, mentioned above. The tree forms part of the setting of a listed building, Stoke Lodge, and assists in masking a very ugly pavilion tower and blending it into the landscape. Severe crown lifting of the tree would be detrimental to the setting of this listed building.

In addition to the above, the school's own ecology report dated July 2018 notes that there is moderate to high potential for foraging and commuting bats in this area and the tree may also have shallow holes, crevices and dense growths of ivy that could be used by roosting bats. Several species of bat (including common and soprano pipistrelle, noctule and Leisler's bats) are regularly seen flying in and out of trees in this area. Bats are a protected species and their habitat should not be disturbed to suit the tenant's whim.

Finally, on the reasons underlying the proposal: as already stated, no reason is given for why most of the works proposed in this application are necessary. It may be that reasons have been discussed behind the scenes with BCC tree officers to persuade them that the works are 'reasonable and required' but these are not apparent from the application and therefore must be discounted.

If the suggestion is that the crown-lifting would assist with Cotham School's planned 'refurbishment' of the pavilion, the application does not say so or provide any evidence of why such significant detriment to a protected tree is justified by any supposed advantage to any future building works. In any case, there is no certainty that any redevelopment or refurbishment of the pavilion building is actually to be carried out, due

to the current absence of consent to use public money for this purpose and also because the school has stated that if the playing fields are registered as a TVG, it will cease to use them - in which case a 100+ year old tree might be decimated for no purpose at all. The results of the TVG applications may potentially be known within as little as 12 months so it is not appropriate to approve major crown-lifting work (or the removal of other limbs to 'balance the crown') now.

The tree management specification attached to the application also proposes to cut back a group of smaller trees next to the ash tree (labelled G2 on the plan) 'to allow the security camera to view the gateway'. Is this the true motivation for proposing a substantial crown-lift of the ash tree: namely, to clear the sight-lines of the CCTV camera, mounted on the pavilion tower, towards the West Dene gate? The previous, cancelled, application to do works to the ash tree was explicitly for the benefit of the school's CCTV - it has not mentioned CCTV in this application but the motivation appears to be the same. If so, it was the applicant's choice to install a camera in that position; it could re-site it elsewhere. There is no reason why a protected tree should be chopped about on the whim of the applicant to improve their CCTV footage. The fence and gate may have to be removed anyway within a short period of time, depending on the outcome of the current Town or Village Green and Public Right of Way applications. There is no justification for removing multiple branches of a healthy and protected tree, to allow a camera that could be placed elsewhere, to monitor a gate that may soon have to be removed.

In summary, the emails disclosed under FOI suggest that this fine, healthy ash tree is under threat from a snowballing proposal that both BCC as landowner and its tree officers have said was over the top but now appear prepared to wave through, for motives that haven't been explained in the application. Bosky Trees was 'open to alternatives' but wasn't given any and has apparently increased the severity of the proposed crown lift. The school is apparently only making a case for the removal of one damaged branch, but has wrapped it up in a proposal to hack a beautiful old ash tree into a weird and unnatural shape. The tree isn't damaging anything - the application says so. It is a healthy ash tree and needs to be protected, with actions taken for the good of the tree, not for other reasons. If it's in the way of a CCTV camera, then move the camera - otherwise every developer that wants a TPO tree out of its way will know exactly where to start!

We need BCC to carefully and rationally apply its published policy in this case and to ensure that TPO protection actually means something in the case of this notable, beautiful and healthy tree.

on 2020-08-16   OBJECT

tion to 'crown lift' the large Ash tree by the pavilion tower on Stoke Lodge: 20/03288/VP.

We live in 21 West Dene, the property closest to the Ash tree in question.

We object to this application for the following reasons:

. No reason has been given by Cotham School for carrying out this work.

. If to refurbish the pavilion requires cutting down a TPO protected tree then the pavilion is in the wrong place.

. If the reason is to improve CCTV coverage then the cameras need repositioning not the tree cutting back.

. No decision should be made about this prior to the results of the TVG application which, depending on the result, could render it irrelevant.

. The tree is healthy and does not require cutting back for safety reasons.

. The proposed severe crown lifting would make the tree ugly and, potentially, unstable.

. The application states that the lower branches overhang the neighbours gardens. However the School has failed to get the opinions of the neighbours affected.

. We find the tree provides an attractive green backdrop to our garden and hides the

unsightly, derelict pavilion and do not want to have it removed.

. We would welcome representatives of the School to visit our garden to see for themselves and discuss their plans further but , as usual, they are trying to push changes through with no consideration for the local community.

Alan and Trish Roe.

on 2020-08-15  

This application is unwarranted. The tree (a lovely old ash which is subject to a TPO) is clearly healthy (foliage in excellent condition even after recent hot dry summer weather) and poses no risk to the public. The drastic pruning proposed by Cotham School won't make the tree or the public any safer. Its impact will be twofold: to increase the field of view for the school's proposed surveillance cameras while at the same time reducing the ecological value for local wildlife, especially foraging bats which use this little wooded corridor for nocturnal feeding. If the Council cares about the amenity value of the Stoke Lodge playing fields and care about protecting local wildlife then councillors will reject this silly application. And it would be good if they could restrain the illegal activity of the school's management team who have twice in the last 2 years dug trenches through the roots of this ash tree, with complete disregard for its TPO status.

on 2020-08-15   OBJECT

I do not feel the steps which are proposed are proportionate to the problem they address. Tehy are unnecessary and cause unnecessary damage to the park and unnecessarily alienate many residents. The applicant states that a single brken branch overhangs the path across the field and another branch overhanging the pavilion touches the pavaillion itself. The proposed tree surgery is not necessary to remedy these minor problems. If an independent assessment has determined there is a health and safety risk, then simple and straightforwarwrd measures to trim the limb in question would suffice and would save valuable resources as well as preserve the tree and the integrity of the environs of which is it part. Secondly, I am concerned by the clear similarities between this application and 19 / 04039 to install a surveillance camera. This similarity makes me wonder if suggest that the real reason for the proposed radical tree surgery on a protected tree which endangers its continued thriving is in fact to enable surveillance camera installation. Using the tree and children's safety as a somescreen is shameful. This is a transparent attempt at celemting a landgrab and local residents are already deeply alienated and angered by the school's actions and the apparent lack of principle being shown by the Council and we remind Counsillors that their posts are not guaranteed and they must act with integrity in the public interest to remin in authority.

on 2020-08-15   OBJECT

I object to this application based on the following principles:1 Any work undertaken on a tree should always be consistent with ensuring its long-term viability.2 Any other work on a tree should only be the minimum necessary to reduce an imminent health and safety risk to the public.Anything more than this should not be permitted.I also object to this application for the following specific reasons:1 No reason is given for why these works are proposed.2 There will be a negative impact on the tree.3 There will be a negative impact on the ecology of the area.4 There will be a negative aesthetic impact.

on 2020-08-15   OBJECT

I strongly object to this proposal. From my observations as a neighbour to Stoke Lodge Playing Fields, I see that one small, broken branch of this TPO tree overhangs a footpath and one of its limbs that overhangs the pavilion rubs against the building. This derelict edifice is fenced off from public use and, in any case, is riddled with asbestos and because of an active Town and Village Green application is unlikely to be refurbished any time soon. The tree, in my view, has very strong amenity value because it is set in the parkland in such a way that it can be viewed, from a distance, from three sides in all its glorious magnificence.

Others have written at length about the proposed desecration of this magnificent tree. I refer, in particular, to the objections very succinctly set out by The Bristol Tree Forum dated July 2020. If the real purpose of this application, not referred to in this application by Cotham School, is to allow the CCTV camera greater capacity as its viewing power is currently blocked by a TPO tree, then why not move the camera? The gate the camera is trained on may well have to be removed soon anyway because, as stated above, there are TVG and Public Right of Way applications under current consideration.

I find it hard to believe that Council Officers will willingly allow this beautiful, old Ash tree to be cut into a weird shape just because a much simpler solution is not entertained. In short there is no justification for removing multiple branches of the Ash tree, and therefore this application should be rejected.

on 2020-08-15   OBJECT

There seems to be some, albeit weak, justification for one (damaged, lower) branch to be removed, as requested by the School. I say weak since the relevant branch is within the fenced off area around the derelict pavilion.

However, there is no justification to ruin the shape and future viability of this TPO tree with the aggressive crown lift to 8 metres, which seems to be being proposed by BCC against its own TPO. There is no safety need to do this. The pavilion is derelict and unusable. There seems to be no possible legitimate reason from any party to undertake this work. I believe the tree after the proposed pruning would be far less attractive since it would not look like an ash, thus damaging its amenity value. It might also be that the tree is more vulnerable to winds, then being top-heavy. It is very likely that such an aggressive crown lifting would weaken the tree. The TPO is there for a reason, PRESERVATION.

I strongly oppose this application and ask that it be rejected.

on 2020-08-14   OBJECT

There has been a total absence of any notification on-site or anywhere nearbyconcerning this planning application; yet, locally produced Notices detailing the proposed treesurgery, have been stripped down over-night presumably by Cotham Academy staff; along withinnocuous BTF Information Notices, (requesting care with all TPO'd Trees when using heavymachinery on the parkland). Shockingly a small note has been torn down from inside the gate bythe Cheyne Road entranceway (explaining how to safely exit the parkland if "visitors findthemselves locked in") again, presumably by the same busy-body operative.Therefore, having paid a routine visit to Stoke Lodge Parkland today albeit in torrential rain, it isquite evident that Cotham Academy should reconsider their financial priorities concerningmandatory up-keep of their Leased assets, without delay.The dilapidated pavilion has been slowly rotting for decades and is now spewing water fromwrecked rainwater pipes onto the fabric of the building but instead of maintaining or rebuilding thisuseful asset, they have spent inordinate sums of money on fencing to exclude all be fee payingmembers of the public. Additional finance has been lavished on CCTV facilities to monitor a rarelyused site and now the school seeks to irrevocably damage a TPO'd Ash Tree that just happens tobe in the way of an "unauthorized" camera attached to the mouldy pavilion tower.

on 2020-08-14   OBJECT

This is a beautiful Ash tree and it would be a travesty to remove branches and changethe shape of the tree. This tree can not endanger any pupils at Cotham School as it is nowherenear the fenced in area. This area of beautiful parkland is becoming more and more under threatof having tpo'd trees being chopped at, either for another cctv camera or because they are in theway of existing cameras. This is a pleasant neighbourhood and the crime rate is very low. So whythe need for cameras and trees chopped to suit a school, which actually has its own playing fieldson their campus. Please do not allow this tree to be decimated.

on 2020-08-13   OBJECT

I support the detailed objections put forward by the organisations looking to protect thistree and the environment of Stoke Lodge. It is obvious from previous damage done to protectedtrees in Stoke Lodge by Cotham School and their subcontractors that they cannot be trusted toabide by TPO requirements and act in the best interest of these important trees.

As a neighbour of Stoke Lodge and a resident of Bristol I call upon the council to support the TPOand protect these trees by denying this planning application.

If the tree needs surgical work for its health, on the advice of qualified independent arborists, thenBCC can justify and undertake this work without intervention by Cotham school.

on 2020-08-12   OBJECT

We object most strongly to this application.This Ash tree is a highly prominent feature of Stoke Lodge Parkland, it is vitally important toprotect this healthy Ash tree which is subject to a TPO.No structural or physiological faults have been identified in the Application. No evidence isprovided for any reason for cutting the lower branches.Raising the crown to a minimum height of eight meters would not only completely spoil theappearance of this tree but make it top heavy and unbalanced, potentially creating a risk toneighbouring properties. Currently this tree helps to mask the ugliness of the pavilion tower.It would seem apparent that the reason for a substantial crown lift is to clear the sight lines of theCCTV camera.

The tree has already been subjected to invasive works by Cotham, use of a mini digger cuttingthrough its roots in 2019. Further damage to the tree by removing lower branches could be fatal.

There is absolutely no justification for removing branches of a healthy and protected tree.

on 2020-08-12   OBJECT

We object most strongly to this application.This Ash tree is a highly prominent feature of Stoke Lodge Parkland, it is vitally important toprotect this healthy Ash tree which is subject to a TPO.No structural or physiological faults have been identified in the Application. No evidence isprovided for any reason for cutting the lower branches.Raising the crown to a minimum height of eight meters would not only completely spoil theappearance of this tree but make it top heavy and unbalanced, potentially creating a risk toneighbouring properties. Currently this tree helps to mask the ugliness of the pavilion tower.It would seem apparent that the reason for a substantial crown lift is to clear the sight lines of theCCTV camera.

The tree has already been subjected to invasive works by Cotham, use of a mini digger cuttingthrough its roots in 2019. Further damage to the tree by removing lower branches could be fatal.

There is absolutely no justification for removing branches of a healthy and protected tree.

on 2020-08-11   OBJECT

In view of the history of the somewhat cavalier behaviour by the applicant and itscontractors with regard to this and other trees on Stoke Lodge, I have doubts about this latestapplication. Whilst I am in no way qualified to make a technical objection to the proposed works,the arguments put forward by the Bristol Tree Forum and our local Tree Champion StephanieFrench seem very convincing.

on 2020-08-10   OBJECT

The TPO'd tree under threat, by a questionable application for Crown Works, is an agedbut beautiful Ash Tree that's an integral part of a parkland panorama encompassing a G2 listedManor House.This tree, together with its TPO Grouping, play a major part in an organic environment thatincludes many endangered plants, animals and birds; sadly all under increasing threat from theunnecessary 'sanitizing' of a valued Green Space by the Lease holder.The Parkland is a vital Open Space in the midst of a densely populated area and so highly valuedas a safe environment for recreation by local residents - whilst the ancient trees contribute to asense of wellbeing.The Ash tree is not a safety threat to Cotham pupils or the general public but is an establishedroost for several species of Bats - as was the once ivy clad tower - stripped bare by the applicantin preparation for the imposition of a high level CCTV camera.Notably, a branch on the Ash Tree that brushes the tower inhibits the cameras view of an unused(lockable) gate and a busy public footpath beyond but fortunately, shields a neighbouringproperty's upper bedrooms from unregulated CCTV recordings. Equally salient; there is noconvincing justification for decimating this tree, when the camera could/should be repositionedlower down on the tower.There are striking similarities here, with a recent event in Newport. Gwent; City Council workmeninstalled a lamppost in the heart of a 60ft London plane tree although clearly, it would block all lightfrom the brand new lamppost; however, Council officials said the tree was to blame and not theposition of the new light!In addition, many trees on Stoke Lodge Parkland are TPO'd just like the Ash and so subject toregular inspection by BCC Tree Officers but there is no evidence that this tree was diseased or

under investigation for any issue prior to this application; apart from wilful root damage by theapplicant on two separate occasions, the most recent in June 2020.There will (inevitably) be further requests for "crowning" if this application succeeds; possiblyTPO'd Trees adjacent to the White Shed at the Parry's Lane end of the Parkland. These historictrees border a walled public footpath and have over-hanging boughs on the Parkland side thatpredate the spiked fencing and CCTV cameras.Sadly some branches (close to the shed) have been subject to wilful damage, by someoneclaiming to be "authorized" but the schools CCTV failed to record the vandalism that took placedirectly in front of two cameras, so it would seem their monitoring effectiveness is questionable.The applicant has demonstrated a complete lack of empathy for the trees within this Parkland inthe past; so can they be relied upon to use due care in any tree surgery to "protected" trees, giventhat within their 2011 Lease, BCC specifically indemnified them. Therefore any modest pruning ofdamaged branches on TPO'd Trees, anywhere within the Grounds, should always be undertakenby Professional Tree Surgeons directly employed by BCC.The School has kept all pedestrian access gates locked throughout "lockdown" under the apparentrecommendation of their insurance provider; yet despite this compelling requirement, theCommunity now have controlled access to the Parkland. However was this eleventh hourconcession only grudgingly granted just before this application was logged, to assuageopposition?Basically, the applicant has no authority, within their Lease, to control/interfere with TPO'd trees ortheir canopy just because arboreal growth happens to be inconveniently vigorous; please rejectoutright, this unjustifiable and destructive application.

on 2020-08-07   OBJECT

I object to this application. Crown lifting of this Ash tree will leave it aestheticallycompromised at least and may well shorten its life. Cotham School have not given adequatereason why they wish to undertake this work save for saying that one branch is rubbing againstthe pavilion and that some branches overhang the adjacent footpath. The idea that there could beany risk to people using the footpath is tantamount to saying that woodland walks should bebanned forthwith on health and safety grounds.The reason that they wish crown lift to be undertaken to 8 metres appears to be because theywish an uninterrupted field for a CCTV camera presently mounted on the pavilion.So, rather than move the camera they wish to effectively vandalise the Ash tree by removing aconsiderable part of its structure and thereby endangering its life and resulting with a tree ofunnatural and almost comical appearance.This tree is protected by a TPO. Being an Ash it is already at considerable risk of die back diseaseand this will be increased by the measures proposed.The CCTV camera was installed without due permission in the first place and Cotham are beingreticent in giving reasons for needing the extravagant changes proposed. The vague mention ofoverhanging branches or deadwood is surely spurious.This tree should be left as it is apart from attention to dead branches which could present somerisk to the public. This is normal. Crown lifting to 8 metres above the ground is frankly ludicrous.

on 2020-08-07   OBJECT

I object most strongly to this application. Given the current climate of Ash dieback it isvitally important to protect this healthy Ash tree which is subject to a TPO. The school haspreviously carried out unlawful damage to this tree by cutting through the roots with a mechanicaldigger. The consequences of which may not come to light until some time in the future.Raising the crown to a minimum height of eight meters would not only completely spoil theappearance of this tree but make it top heavy and possibly unstable in high winds. At this momentin time this tree helps to mask the ugliness of the pavilion tower. The applicant has given no realjustification for butchering this tree. The reasons they have given are to say the least laughable. Ifit is to give their CCTV cameras an improved line of sight then I suggest they move their cameras.Cotham School appears to have absolutely no respect for the environment of Stoke Lodge Park,its trees and wild life.

on 2020-08-06   OBJECT

In the submitted documents by Cotham School to carry out the work to this protectedtree no reason is given to justify the necessity which would satisfy conditions applied to trees withTree Protection Orders.This application does not show 'management' activity being undertaken for the benefit of aprotected tree, but unnecessary and detrimental action being proposed at the whim of CothamSchool to a healthy Ash tree with TPO protection.

Cotham School state there is no damage being caused to the pavilion or any neighbouringproperty, therefore there is no reason in that respect to spoil the shape of this tree.No evidence is provided of any reason for the proposed crown lifting even though this is requiredby the application form. Nor is any reason given for cutting the lower branches on the EbenezerLane side. Given that the tree is healthy and there is no damage being caused, what possiblejustification is there for removing significant numbers of branches?

The proposed works would be ecologically and aesthetically negative. There is no apparentreason to carry them out that would justify such damage to this protected tree. What is proposed issubstantially detrimental to the tree's appearance and the contribution it provides to the listedLodge and parkland.

The proposal to remove 'all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towardsand above the building' would completely change the shape of an Ash tree into something quiteun-natural looking and I believe would make the tree become top heavy and unbalanced.It may be years before damage to the tree from the severing of significant roots becomes visible -

further major shocks in the form of the removal of up to 50% of the tree could be fatal to it.

Ash trees in the country are already suffering from a fatal disease, therefore it seems totally wrongto threaten the health of a perfectly healthy tree wantonly.

I believe Cotham Schools real motivation, although not stated, is to clear the sight-lines of theCCTV camera, mounted on the pavilion tower, which was installed without proper processanyway. The tree existed in that position a long time before the CCTV camera was installedwithout seeking approval. If the school feels the tree affects the camera efficacy, then it seems tomake much more sense to resite the camera and not to touch a protected tree.There is no good reason why a protected tree should be deformed to look un-natural on the whimof the applicant to improve their CCTV footage.

The application states that the work has been discussed with a BCC tree officer and implies thatthe officer considers the works to be reasonable and required. It seems to me that pre-judgementof the application has already occurred which in itself is not right and destroys any confidence thepublic might have on an unbiased process by the people in charge of considering the application.

For all the above reasons, this application must be dismissed.

on 2020-08-06   OBJECT

I fully object to this proposal. There is not sufficient evidence provided to prove a needfor such extensive work to an ancient Ash tree which has a TPO. The tree has high visual amenityand bio-diversity value; due to its age and species it is part of a valuable ecosystem for the localwildlife, such as the various bat species that reside around Stoke Lodge. The tree was therebefore the pavillion was built! No evidence is given in the application to prove an imminent healthand safety issue, or that the tree has succumbed to disease. If a dead limb is in fact an imminentrisk to public safety , then just that structure could be removed. The fact that dead wood is animportant part of the ecosystem and provides a valuable habitat in an ever-shrinking naturalenvironment should be a reason that such proposed extensive work to an ancient tree is onlyundertaken as a very last resort. If the neighbouring garden owners and footpath users have notformerly complained that the overhanging tree is an issue for them then surely this overhangshould not be stated as a driving force for dramatic lopping and crown lifting? The tree has alreadyhad damage caused to its roots so this 100+ year old specimen should not be subject to anyfurther damage which could cause weakness and lead to a hastened demise. With pending TVGapplications major proposals affecting highly valued natural components of Stoke Lodge PlayingFields should be put on hold until TVG outcome is known.

on 2020-08-05   OBJECT

The Bristol Tree Forum objection sets out the many reasons why this proposal shouldbe rejected. This tree is less than 100m from our front door and does an excellent job of visuallyshielding us from the derelict pavilion and brick tower. The photograph of what the cropped treewill probably look like shows how much visual damage will be done.So in the absence of any convincing reason for carrying out these works the application should berejected. If indeed there are other reasons for wanting this work done then these should bedeclared in a revised application.

on 2020-08-04   OBJECT

The ash is subject to a Tree Preservation order; only work consistent with ensuring thetree's long term viability and to a minimum extent should be carried out.Health or safety issues do not come into the purview of this application, as the tree barely touchesany part of the tower belonging to the disused and dangerous asbestos-filled pavilion which hasbeen out of use, and looks like continuing to be so for some time.Damage has been caused to the roots of the tree in the recent past by the unauthorised use of amechanical digger to lay a cable. The cable was considered necessary by Cotham School as partof preparing for cameras around Stoke Lodge. This application iappears to be part of an operationto give cameras an even greater view over the field, and has nothing to do with preserving thetree. It would, on the contrary be potentially harmful to hack away the branches up to 8 m high andwould leave the tree looking more like a palm tree than an ash. It would destabilise the tree in highwinds.I object to the application as it is harmful to the well being of the tree and underlines the futility ofthe school's attempts to survey everybody on Stoke Lodge.

on 2020-08-03   OBJECT

According to the September 2011 lease between BCC and CA, BCC retained all responsibility forthe safety of the trees on Stoke Lodge and also granted an indemnify to CA for any damage doneby trees. Accordingly, BCC and not CA is responsible for the welfare and health of all trees onStoke Lodge.Therefore, the fact that this application and the decision to effect works to treesoriginates from CA and not BCC (who are responsible for all trees ) seems questionable.

Nothing in this application indicates concern for the well being of trees or benign treemanagement.

One set of works involves a tree that has already been the subject of non approved works byCotham. I would have imagined that if BCC thought that further work for safety should be done tothe same tree they would have arranged this when they examined it post (appalling) root incidentwhen they requested that remedial works to the roots were effected.

What exact justification is being given for the proposed work to the trees? The application seemsto allude to safety and disease - referencing the footpaths and a non used, brick tower and oldpavilion.

Branches overhanging buildings: Most reasonable councils will not prune or remove branchesmerely to reduce the nuisance of branches overhanging buildings - that is not a justifiable reasons.

Branches overhanging footpath: Call me cynical but I doubt that CA has the public interest at hearthere! Many BCC owned tree branches overhang public footpaths and unless obviously diseasedor lower than 2.5 metres thereby causing an obstruction they should not be removed. This is whatBCC's own guidance states. If BCC accept that these healthy branches should be removed just foroverhanging a public footpath then they are setting a huge benchmark for the many hundreds oftrees adjacent to footpaths that are within their responsibility.Interestngly, the actual presence of afence means that the public have to walk close to the perimeter of Stoke Lodge where there aremany overhanging branches. Should they all be lopped?

Branches overhanging gardens: This is ridiculous. Many trees have branches overhanginggardens ...since when did they to be removed? Are they really proposing this as a reason?

Branches encroaching onto or touching a building : It's mainly a disused tower that is touched.There are some leaves skimming the roof of the disused pavilion. Whilst it is normal for branchesactually touching a building owned by a third party to be removed in this instance, the buildingsconcerned are a pavilion and brick tower (owned by BCC not CA ) which are both grotesqueeyesores, unused and derelict. CA also proposed knocking them both down and building a newsports hub. No evidence has been submitted with this application as to any proposed renovationsof this pavilion. Indeed renovating the pavilion was deemed by CA's own experts as not worthwhilefor their needs. It contains dangerous asbestos and is a building which any reasonable thinkingperson would be knocked down by now not just CA! I would be more concerned about possibledamage to health from the asbestos in regards to any proposed renovations than falling treebranches. More importantly, (other than some branches above the building which are harmless.)the structure that is affected by is a disused tower that serves no purpose that I can see other thanto house the pan and tilt camera the vision of which I believe might be obscured by this tree.( Isuspect that this camera is the crux of the matter.) Even if the pavilion is renovated the tower stillhas no purpose.And moreover, even if the pavilion was renovated its use is clearly not a long termplan and in the meantime, a very healthy, attractive 100 year old tree has been sacrificed for whatexactly?

Crown reduction of the tree up to 8 metres: This is such a draconian and highly unusual action andyet where is the justification? I have struggled to find any planning applications for an 8 metrecrown lift. According to BCC's own guidance, crown reduction for busy highways would only be upto 5.5 metres and footpaths up to 2.5 metres Even then, none of this work would normally involveremoving structural branches of a tree.

At present, this tree adds to the general beautiful of Stoke Lodge which has been described asbeing akin to parkland. The height of the tree makes it clearly visible from a distance. The treehelps softens the impact of the eye sore pavilion and the surrounding grim run down immediate

area ( in an otherwise pleasant sea of verdant green ) that has been neglected for years by CA!This tree is the most attractive amd useful thing there ( for wildlife / O2 production ) and anydamage to it would have a significant impact on that area and also impact Stoke Lodge from afarincluding the opposite side.

Loss of too many branches will result in an unnatural lollipop shaped trees. This will be furtherdetrimental as it will occur in the main only on the pavilion side.The tree will be a risible lopsidedlollipop! If this work is permitted this would have a severe detrimental impact on the visual amenityof the tree. The visual damage done would then make it easier for CA to argue for its completeremoval of this tree for redevelopment works (for say a sports hub)as by then it would have lowvisual amenity due ( some what perversely) to the work to it that CA did! Is BCC really going to letthis drip, drip assault happen? Basically message to landowners : prune any protected tree until itbecomes an eyesore!

Stoke Lodge is the home to numerous bats that regularly very pleasantly fly over my gardenernight to and from Stoke Lodge. I strongly believe that work to the tree would further disturb theirhabitat and foraging. I would have thought that experts need to consider this proposed tree workcarefully before any further work to trees is done. How does the Council know that they are notdisturbing roosts or key resting spots etc? What steps is BCC taking to protect wildlife here andfully investigate matters?

Harmful organisms could enter the tree via the pruning wounds at a time when the tree is stillrecovering from damage to its roots. Overall I also think that this work together with the appallingunapproved work to its roots is significantly likely to compromise the health integrity of a tree andultimately lead to its loss.

The fact that Cotham Academy have made this unusual application to amongst other thingsunusually crown lift a tree to 8 metres in regards to a tree that they have already damaged is trulybreathtakingly audacious. Their application shows an appalling lack of contrition and concernabout the tree and adds further insult to injury. Is the tree officer truly supportive of this applicationafter what CA have wrongly done to the tree very recently ? BCC should be very cross that thisapplication has even been made to a damaged protected tree.

Overall, I have the impression that this TPO tree seems to be in the way of CA's plans. Poor tree!

on 2020-08-03   OBJECT

My first comment is that it is refreshing to see an Application for work to a TPO tree onStoke Lodge Playing Field being submitted for public scrutiny.I am alarmed to see that the Applicant declares that it already has an opinion that the work isreasonable and required from the authority to whom it has made this Application to carry out thework, and this prior to the Application being submitted for public scrutiny. What trust can we put inthis process?The residents of Bristol have for several years witnessed works to TPO trees on this site carriedout without prior Application by this Applicant, even though UK Statute/Regulation says that nowork to TPO trees, even (importantly) amongst the roots, shall be carried out without the consentgranted following a successful Application. This is so that Conditions to any consent granted canbe set, and there can then follow enforcement of those conditions if they are breached. This is trueeven when any tree works are being carried out under the terms of Permitted Development (PD),and the application of these rules is not discretionary.Bristol City Council (BCC) for a while apparently did not require such an Application when treeworks were being done under Permitted Development at this site, yet when BCC carries out treework itself at this site it has always made an Application. Perhaps the other works were not PDassociated?Only following months of howls of protest from residents, insisting that BCC adhered to UKregulation, have we seen any such Applications required to be made by this Applicant for works ontrees at this site, but even then, formal public applications for works to TPO trees have not alwaysbeen required by the Planning Authority for this site by this Applicant.This occasional change was too late to prevent the abuse of some of the trees, and the effects ofconcrete having been poured amongst the roots of several truly splendid precious trees, even a

Veteran Oak, and the use of power tools amongst their roots, are yet to be seen. There has beena belief expressed that if a tree is damaged one day and does not fall over the next day, then nodamage has been done. This is nonsense of course. Some recent infringements, highlighted byresidents, are still under investigation.This may seem a long-winded pre-amble, but the context for this Application needs to be setbecause the tree that is the subject of this Application has already been damaged twice, and bythe same Applicant - and this is a matter of public record - apparently with the prior knowledge ofdepartments within BCC who did not request a formal Application despite UK regulation.The Ash tree in question has twice had to suffer excavation of its roots, close to its trunk, bothusing a mechanical digger. The second excavation was done in the same site despite therequirement to carry out remedial works following the first episode, which remedial works wererequired by BCC only following further howls of protest from residents, who were at firstdisbelieved until they produced video evidence of the event. Evidence of the second episode hasbeen produced by protestors and there has been admonishment issued to the Applicant, again.The Tree:This is a mature Ash Tree protected by TPO No 1192. It does not have Ash die-back disease.Even if it did, the presence of that disease is not a reason to fell it unless it poses an immediatedanger. Indeed, keeping affected trees is encouraged by the National bodies who know aboutsuch things, as some trees are naturally resistant, or may develop resistance having becomeinfected."Crown lifting" sounds grand and beneficial, but is effectively a very heavy prune. Pruning a treehas more harmful consequences than beneficial ones, and should only be done when necessaryand FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE TREE, and not for the benefit of someone, particularly forsomeone who does not own the tree. BCC owns the tree, which means that we, everyone inBristol, own the tree.The harmful effects of pruning are:Increased pathogen and pest vulnerability, and increased likelihood of pathogen colonisationbecause of the open wounds - the cuts. (this in a time when Ash die back is in Bristol!).Increased hydraulic stress.Increased competition within the tree for carbon, which is needed anyway by the tree for growth,and, following pruning, will be needed for the healing of the cuts as well as for normal growth.Reduced production of oxygen and reduced absorption of carbon dioxide because the crownreduction has reduced the number of leaves available for photosynthesis.Reduced ecological diversity and reduced volume of habitat.Reduced nutrients produced by the tree normally available for resorption and recycling, e.g. leafdebris.All this in a time of a declared climate emergency, when we should be struggling our utmost toimprove the environment, and certainly not harm it further.The Applicant is a Secondary School - and no doubt Ecology and Environment are subjects in thecurriculum.A crown reduction of this magnitude - approximately 50% - could kill this tree on its own, let alonea tree that has had two recent insults to its roots. Cuts done inexpertly would kill the tree for sure.

In fact, the only time when pruning is beneficial to a tree is to remove structural defects within/ofthe tree. This does not mean that when a tree is encroaching upon an outside structure it shouldbe pruned. Unfortunately, most pressure for the pruning of trees is to make trees fit in with thehuman environment, and this should not be done when it is harmful for the tree (which, as outlinedabove, is in many ways) in order to suit Man's whim.This tree has already sustained damage to its roots twice. Some remedial work was done to theroots on 15th October 2019 to try to reduce the damage following the digging of a trench throughits Root Protection Area with a mechanical digger. The soil was aerated and some mycorrhizalfungi spores applied next to the roots. But then the soil that had been treated in such manner waspromptly dug up again, and further compacted, by a second episode of trenching with noApplication, but it has been suggested that departments within BCC knew it was going to becarried out even with no Application, and did not request such an Application.So, having already been attacked from below twice, now the proposal is to attack it from above byinflicting several wounds and reducing its leaf numbers, impacting upon its biological systemsadversely and encouraging infections. Leading to a certain death?Why?:The Applicant states that there are fears that the tree might break or fall, or could be diseased, butit is not damaging property.The Application is to remove all the lower lateral limbs originating below 8 metres.Two of these limbs extend over a footpath to the back gardens of two neighbouring properties andthus away from the Applicant's leased area. Have these residents complained - I believe not? Isthere a real expectation that these limbs will fail and fall? Maybe every tree in the country shouldhave all its branches removed just in case they fall?One of the branches rubs against the tower of a derelict pavilion. Is there evidence that this limb isfailing and an expectation that it will fall?Or is this Application in order to suit the Applicant because the School wants to develop the site byrebuilding the derelict pavilion? IF the derelict pavilion were rebuilt then there would be no need toput in place a structure which interfered with the tree!Firstly there has been a suggestion that the funding to rebuild the pavilion may not be forthcoming,so it is incumbent upon the Planning Authority to make sure that the plans are firm and agreedwith the funding Authority, and are not just an aspiration of the Applicant, as it would be a greatshame to sacrifice an important publicly owned tree for a reason that then disappeared.Secondly, it is possible with some imagination, and a conscience, to design a building that is closeto a tree so that it "includes" the tree - take a look at the Visitor Centre at Clifton SuspensionBridge to see such an example in North Somerset.So why damage an important tree to such an extent that it is likely to be doomed, to suit a buildingthat might not happen, when the tree (one branch!) need not interfere with the building, were it tobe built, anyway?The TPO status:One has to ask "What will happen to the form of this tree if it is "re-shaped" in this way"? It looks tome that it would be transformed into the shape of a ridiculous lollipop. Importantly it would nolonger look in any way like a mature Ash tree.

The Tree Evaluation Method for Preservation Orders (TEMPO) is a scoring system for decidingwhether a tree deserves/merits a TPO. Part of the scoring is an assessment as to whether thetrees does or does not have remaining longevity, and has a good form. If this Ash tree undergoesthis crown reduction it will no longer have the form of an Ash, and will have been further damaged(the two episodes of trenching amongst its roots being earlier episodes) likely to reduce its lifespan - i.e. its longevity. A crown reduction/lift of this magnitude is likely of itself to reduce itslongevity.Indeed a recent planning application (20/02457) to fell an Ash tree in a Conservation Area (Clifton,Bristol) was granted because the tree could not be "saved" in the only way possible under thosecircumstances, by being made the subject of a TPO, one of the reasons being because, and Iquote "The tree has been heavily crown lifted in the past which detracts from the trees naturalhabit."So, because of previous heavy crown lifting the form of that tree in Clifton had been spoiled, and itdid not merit the granting of a TPO, and it is to be felled. There was early Ash die-back, but assaid earlier, of itself that is not a reason to fell a tree. There has not been a suggestion that thisAsh, the subject of the Application at Stoke Lodge, has Ash die-back.

The Ash tree which is the subject of this Application already has a TPO. If this work is carried out,and then there are further/future applications to do things to it (and who knows by whom andwhen?) then it has to merit its TPO status all over again - and may lose it because of its formfollowing this crown lifting, were this to go ahead. If it loses its TPO status then, and by not beingin a Conservation Area, there would be no need to make an application to do anything to it - itwould lose all its current protection, and who can tell what might then happen to it? We couldhazard a guess.

Please deny this Application. It is quite unnecessary to risk the future health of this alreadycompromised tree. There is a strong possibility the Pavilion will not be rebuilt.

I suspect the reason, or at least another reason, for this Application is for CCTV observation of thewhole site, as there was an earlier Application for similar works to this tree for just this purpose -19/04039.That Application is strangely no longer visible on the Planning Portal so I give the wording of ithere from documents I saved:"Ash (T8) Remove the lowest 6 branches on the south side of the tree and crown lift by removingsecondary laterals to give a minimum clearance of 1.5m branches above to clear both the sideand the top of tower to allow for the installation of CCTV cameras. TPO 1192".That Application had nothing to do with the tree itself, and I strongly suspect that this Applicationhasn't either. What a sacrifice!

on 2020-08-02   OBJECT

This veteren Ash Tree ,is subject to a TPO.The tree has already suffered untold damage when a digger cut a trench through the area of theroots recently.Together with this proposed work this lovely & irreplacable treewould I believe perish.

on 2020-08-01   OBJECT

I strongly object to the application to cut back the Ash Tree in question which is thesubject of a Tree Preservation Order and no more work should be undertaken on this tree unless itis consistent with ensuring its long-term viability and/or the minimum necessary to mitigate anyimminent health and safety risk. I have taken several photographs of this tree and as far as I cansee the dead branch, whilst it probably does need removing, does not actually touch the red bricktower to any great extent and only on one side. The removal of any other branches would bedetrimental to the health of the tree which has already had its roots damaged on two occasions bydigging with a mini digger through them without permission, to lay a cable. There only appears tobe a slight overhang of a further small branch on the pavilion.The tree is of significant age and height and a notable feature of Stoke Lodge where the house isa listed building. The proposed removal of the lower branches of the tree from beneath a height of8 metres would completely ruin the shape of the tree making it top heavy looking like a lollipop andundermining its stability. This tree also helps to mask the appearance of the brick tower. I havespoken with a neighbour who confirms that they are happy to have the branches overhanging theirgarden.The pavilion is currently unused and from the appearance will be for a long time to come;particularly as it has a substantial amount of asbestos which needs removing before any workcould begin therefore no one is in any danger from the branches.There is likelihood that this tree is the home of several species of bat which are regular visitors tothe site from dusk every day.The whole of Stoke Lodge is the subject to two TVG applications and if found in favour all gates,fencing and CCTV camera would need to be removed.

on 2020-07-30   OBJECT

This ash tree is a highly prominent feature of the area.No structural or physiological faults have been identified in the application.

The proposal to remove 'all of the lower lateral limbs originating beneath 8m that extend towardsand above the building' would completely change the shape into something quite un-naturallooking

The tree would, I believe, become top heavy and unbalanced, thus creating potential liability forthe Council.

Has anyone carried out a risk-assessment to determine the potential impact to the tree's long-termprospects?

This tree has already been subject to invasive works by Cotham School when it used a mini-diggerto cut a trench through its roots in late August 2019. The school was required to undertakeremediation works following this event in order to avoid prosecution, and yet repeated the sameaction in June 2020.

It may be years before damage to the tree from the severing of significant roots becomes visible -further major shocks in the form of the removal of up to 50% of the tree could be fatal to it.

The tree forms part of the setting of a listed building, Stoke Lodge, and assists in masking a veryugly pavilion tower

This is not a 'management' activity being undertaken for the benefit of a protected tree.

The tree is a healthy and attractive ash with TPO protection. The application specifically statesthat there is no damage being caused to property (the pavilion or any neighbouring property).

No evidence is provided of any reason or purpose for the proposed crown lifting even though thisis required by the application form. Nor is any reason given for cutting the lower branches on theEbenezer Lane side. Given that the tree is healthy and there is no damage being caused, whatpossible justification is there for cutting significant numbers of branches off?

The application states that the work has been discussed with a BCC tree officer and implies thatthe officer considers the works to be reasonable and required. Could we see this in writing please?In the absence of any evidence that the proposed works to a protected tree are necessary for alegitimate reason, the application should be refused.

on 2020-07-29   OBJECT

On behalf of Bristol Tree Forum, We have now submitted our objections to thisapplication. They can be read via this link:

https://bristoltreeforum.files.wordpress.com/2020/07/planning-application-20-03288-vp-btf-comments.pdf

on 2020-07-28   OBJECT

There is a single, obvious reason for this application which is solely to clear everythingaround the derelict pavilion tower to allow the busybody CCTV surveillance. This is obvious fromthe submitted documents. The overall management plan for the protected trees around thepavilion describes proposed action (over and above the works to Ash T8) which would result in thetotal destruction of several other protected trees and the reduction of yet more protected species.Reading as a whole, the pavilion tower would have clear visibility of just about everything around it- or why was an 8m clear trunk reduction chosen - is it a coincidence that the tower is about 7.5mtall?

But the real matter to which the council must address themselves is simply that this is a protectedtree; and that the law requires that it only be lopped, topped or felled for certain reasons. Despitewhat the application states (apart from the one dead branch), the other actions proposed are notwhat the law allows. Convenience or views from a CCTV camera are NOT relevantconsiderations. And so the simple fact is that (apart from removal of one dead branch), the lawdoes not allow the works proposed. Therefore the law does not permit the application to beallowed. (It might be noted that most of the claims in the submitted documents about the conditionof the tree are totally spurious).

Even from a wider viewpoint, and though the ash may be self-seeded (which has absolutely nobearing on its protected status - protected is protected), its relationship to the tower is beneficial.The tower is unarguably ugly. As the tree now is, it hides the tower from views to the rear; and,when viewed from the Lodge and parkland, provides a beneficial containing background whichhelps to minimise the detrimental impact of the ugly tower. The clearance of the trunk up to 8m will

make the tree stand out as extremely odd (find another natural ash tree which has a bare trunk upto 8m - this is simply not the way ash trees normally grow). So, again, what is proposed issubstantially detrimental to the tree's appearance and contribution to the statutorily listed Lodgeand parkland. This is another factor which may (or must) be considered. The Council have astatutory duty to preserve the character and appearance of listed buildings and their settings. Thisapplication (if approved) would achieve exactly the opposite; and the Council would be failing intheir statutory duty with respect to preserving the appearance and setting of the listed Lodge andparkland.

I cannot see any grounds, both in law and in terms of the visual appearance of the tree and itscontribution to its surroundings, which might provide any reason for permitting this ludicrousproposal.

on 2020-07-28   OBJECT

I wish to object on numerous points, including the follows:

(1) This is not 'management' activity being undertaken for the benefit of a protected tree, butunnecessary action being proposed at the whim of Cotham School. The tree is a healthy with TPOprotection.

(2) Cotham School state there is no damage being caused to property (the pavilion or anyneighbouring property).

(3) Cotham School has ticked 'yes' to indicate that it 'fears that it might break or fall' but thisappears to refer only to one branch. The applicant has claimed the branch that is rubbing on thetower 'would cause severe injury' if it fell, but given that the pavilion is unused and surrounded bysafety fencing, it is highly unlikely that there is actually any risk of injury!

(4) No evidence is provided of any reason or purpose for the proposed crown lifting even thoughthis is required by the application form. Nor is any reason given for cutting the lower branches onthe Ebenezer Lane side. Given that the tree is healthy and there is no damage being caused, whatpossible justification is there for cutting significant numbers of branches off?

(5) The proposed works would be entirely negative - ecologically, aesthetically, and to the treeitself, and there is no apparent reason to carry them out that would justify such damage to thisprotected tree.

(6) Based on the applicant's previous actions I do nor believe them to be trust worth or reputable.For example, Cotham School has recently felled and poisoned a number of trees growing aroundthe building, even though its plans may change depending on the availability of funding and(according to its previous statements) on the outcome of current TVG registration processes. Theschool has stated that if the playing fields are registered as a TVG, it will cease to use them - inwhich case a 100+ year old tree might be decimated for no purpose at all!

(7) The results of the TVG applications may potentially be known within as little as 12 months so itis not appropriate toapprove this application now.

(8) I believe Cotham Schools real motivation is to clear the sight-lines of the CCTV camera,mounted on the pavilion tower. However, it was the applicant's choice to install a camera in thatposition; it could re-site it elsewhere. There is no reason why a protected tree should be choppedabout on the whim of the applicant to improve their CCTV footage.