100-year-old oak tree saved after green campaigner’s cage protest

by | Jun 8, 2014 | Featured Slider, Latest, News

A councillor has won his fight to save an old oak tree in Nuneaton.Keith Kondakor staged a determined protest when the 100-year-old tree was destined for the chop because it stood in the way of a a building site access road.

The Green campaigner locked himself in a metal cage around the tree on Wednesday to keep the chain saws at bay, as workmen began clearing the area alongside Weddington Road.

Then, following a seven-hour stand-off, Coun Kondakor was told the tree was being reprieved – with the developers offering “to find an amicable solution.”

James Wilson, managing director of Davidsons Homes, had a meeting with Coun Kondakor in front of the doomed tree and said that plans to wield the axe would be halted.

“We take our environmental responsibilities very seriously and a number of different options were considered for the road which is needed to allow us to begin construction of homes at the development,” said Mr Wison.

“The removal of this particular tree, to allow for the road, had the least impact on the environment, as alternatives meant that more trees would need to be removed. We will plant a number of new trees to replace it.

“We had lengthy discussions with the local authority and the county highways department and have all the necessary permissions to proceed.

“However, in the light of the protest we have now had positive discussions with a representative of the district council planning department and Councillor Kondakor and we understand the councillor is postponing his protest and will work with us to find an amicable solution.”

Coun Kondakor said: “I am absolutely delighted with this outcome and that the developers have taken notice of local opinion.

“The original planning application did not include a second access road onto the site and there was certainly nothing to indicate that one of the long-established oak trees would have to come down.

“This issue should have been taken up by the council, who gave the go-ahead for the road and for the tree to be removed. In the end, it was only through drawing attention to the situation that commonsense has prevailed.”

Plans to build up to 300 homes on fields next to Weddington Parish Church were approved by the borough council despite massive opposition from residents which resulted in two public enquiries.