|Address||Manor Farm Afc Portway Bristol BS9 2HS
|Proposal||Willows to fell line to facilitate the de-commissioning of the mobile mast site.|
|Type||Works to Trees in Conservation Areas|
|Decision||Place a preservation order on the tree|
|BCC Planning Portal||BCC Planning Portal|
|Public Comments||Supporters: 0 Objectors: 115 Unstated: 2 Total: 117|
|No. of Page Views||0|
|Comment analysis||Date of Submission|
|Nearby Trees||Within 200m|
Recommendation submitted 24-08-20
We have submitted our comments on this application - https://bristoltreeforum.files.wordpress.com/2020/08/20-03328-vc-manor-farm-afc-portway-bristol-bs9-2hs-btf-comments.pdf and made these separate comments:
I cannot tell you how distressing this Application is. I am deeply shocked that there is no reason given on the Application for the felling of a whole line of Willow trees - other than to remove a Mobile Signal mast that is in the grounds of a football club.
The setting: What is called "The Creek" on the plan submitted by the Applicant is in fact the mouth of the River Trym where it joins the River Avon. Any student of the history of Bristol should know of the importance of this site in English and local history. It was a Roman port - Portus Abonae - second only to London in importance in Roman times. Then in 1712 a wet dock was built here by Joshua Franklin, a Bristol Merchant, when the ships had grown too large to navigate the Avon. Roman remains are still visible on the Portway at the junction with Roman Way (!) and remains of the 18th Century harbour walls can still be seen at low tide across the River Trym, in the area between the A4 bridge and the Railway Bridge. This area, rightly, is a Conservation Area, and links with the Sea Mills Garden Suburb Conservation Area slightly further upstream.
Trymside - the name for the large Open Green Space here - is an important area for recreation - walking, children playing, access to the footpaths alongside the River Avon, bird watching, etc.
This area is often flooded at high tide. In fact, the waters can be deep and extensive at Spring and Autumn tides, and warnings are often given by Meteorologists as the nearby roads disappear under water - even the railway bridge could be flooded.
This line of Willow trees serves many purposes. Firstly, it is of its own right most attractive. I shall not repeat here the whole list of the environmental and health benefits of trees. BCC Planners must know them by now, and developers should know them. One benefit stands out here more than the others, and that is that the trees stabilise the river bank. The Willows grow very close to the western/right bank of the river. Indeed the water today, when I went to visit, was over the footpath which was thus impassable - and it was an "ordinary" high tide.
BCC has spent money in recent years planting Willow and Poplar trees along the banks of the Trym in Trymside, the other side of the Portway from this line of Willows, in order to stabilise the banks. As sea levels rise we are going to see more flooding here, and there is dense urban development on both sides of the river.
The trees act as a screen. The buildings of the Manor Farm Football Club are not attractive - I think even the management of the club might agree with that. Also there are TWO mobile phone masts, not one. I am not a NIMBY but one has to admit that if one does not have to see a mobile phone mast adjacent to a beauty spot then that is for the good. If this line of trees was removed so that one of the masts could be dismantled then the other mast - very tall and very ugly thing - and the Club buildings would come into full view from the left/eastern bank of the river and would, frankly, ruin the ambience of that area. The light from the floodlights would pollute the recreational area alongside the river.
In fact there are nothing but major disadvantages from the removal of these trees, as well as no good reasons for removing them, just to dismantle a Mast which appears not to be near the trees. I did not trespass, and the footpath was under water, but it seemed to me that this Application can only be to facilitate access by disturbing everything that is beautiful about Abona so as not to "damage" the Football Club property by providing access through that site. I am only guessing, but as I say, there is precious little detail provided in the Application Form.
There has to be another way to dismantle a Mast without this sacrifice and desecration. Please do not allow it. The consequences for the amenity of the immediate area are too awful to contemplate.