New plan out to be tree-mendous

The maintenance team in the process of removing a tree on Dene Road, Tynemouth.
The maintenance team in the process of removing a tree on Dene Road, Tynemouth.

A new plan is aiming to take root and help increase the number of trees in North Tyneside.

North Tyneside Council, responsible for around 140,000 trees, has drawn up a revised Tree Management Policy.

Approved by cabinet, the policy aims to increase the number of trees by planting a minimum of two for every one removed.

The document sets out the council’s policies on maintenance, pruning, removal, damage, planting, conservation and wildlife, community involvement, education, tree protection, subsidence, drain issues and tree safety.

Coun John Stirling, cabinet member responsible for environment, said: “It is so important that trees are correctly maintained both for the environment and for the benefits they bring to our physical and emotional wellbeing.

“Trees of all shapes and sizes are a haven for wildlife and they brighten up our neighbourhoods.”

“As well as setting out our policies on tree issues, this revised policy takes into account the Authority’s Biodiversity Action Plan and other sustainable development policies setting out how we manage our open spaces, school, cemeteries, housing estates and parks.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our fantastic tree maintenance teams – the staff do such a brilliant job all year round.

“During the recent windy weather, they dealt quickly and safely with more than 50 fallen trees and branches over just one weekend, helping residents and keeping disruption to a minimum.”

The document also includes a comprehensive guide to 29 different tree species with photographs and descriptions about their size, appearance and where they should be grown.

Another new feature of the policy is a section setting out the telephone numbers and email addresses of appropriate departments that can give residents further advice and information.

The council has two dedicated tree maintenance teams who deal with thousands of enquiries a year from residents and businesses asking for trees to be pruned, removed or planted.