Manager of parks and projects Michael Bell shows mayor Ron Bellingham rot in the Guy St trees.
Manager of parks and projects Michael Bell shows mayor Ron Bellingham rot in the Guy St trees. Jenna Cairney

End of the line for trees

IT'S a sad fact, but every living thing has a use-by date.

That was the musing of Southern Downs Regional Council mayor Ron Bellingham as he was shown the rotting trunks of seven mature London planetrees on Guy St yesterday.

An arborist had already sealed the fate of these gigantic and historic trees.

The hollowing trunks and branches were no longer solid enough to safely support their giant canopies.

Reports of near-misses by falling branches and fears the trees themselves could topple over caused council's manager of parks and projects Michael Bell, to investigate their condition.

Out of 12 trees examined on Guy St between Fitzroy and Grafton Sts, seven mature ones will have to be removed due to the hazard they pose.

Cr Bellingham said they had been there since before his time, but removing them was something that needed to be done.

"I'm as disappointed as anyone they have to go," Cr Bellingham said.

Notices have been sent to properties in the vicinity but Mr Bell said council wanted to make the public aware of their plans.

He hopes to remove them some time in May but said council was still having discussions over the best time.

"We'll probably do it at the weekend but we're deciding between Saturday and Sunday," he said.

With church on a Sunday and shopping on a Saturday, a half day of each may be the compromise.

Mr Bell said council would be looking to replace the trees and at that stage his department would be looking for public input to see what they would like to see.

"Council is mindful of maintaining the streetscape," he said.


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