National Trust cuts down diseased beech tree in The Chase car park, Woolton Hill
A giant beech tree in The Chase car park has been cut down due to a fungal disease.
National Trust said the tree, which stands at the entrance to the car park on Station Road, is “in decline”.
While the trust – which runs the park – said it didn’t cut down all diseased trees, it said this tree had to be removed for safety reasons.
The car park was closed on Thursday and yesterday (Friday) to allow for the work to take place.
Corina Dawson, an area ranger for the National Trust, said she was “saddened” by the decision but that it needed to be done due to its location.
She said: “It has to be cut down because of its location and the decaying bracket fungus that have been part of its eco climate for a few years now.
“They have got a greater hold of the tree and it’s in decline.
“If the tree was located in the middle of the woods away from visitor paths it would continue to decay and decline in its own free time.
“As it is right next to the highways and the car park, it causes a greater risk to public safety.
“It has dropped branches on the highway and car park which has been an indicator to its declining condition.”
Ms Dawson said the tree was riddled with a few wood decay fungi including the Ganoderma bracket fungus and Polyporus squamosus (saddle fungus).
Wood decay fungi produce different types of decay, the two most obvious being white and brown rot – often referred to as red rot by entomologists.
These can lead to brittle branch failure and loss of stability in the timber itself.
Ms Dawson added that nothing will be planted in its place for now as the light created from the removal of the tree will benefit the oaks and other trees in the car park, allowing them an open space in which to grow in to and become our future veteran trees.
The work was done by local tree surgeons GB Butlers.
Any questions can be directed to the ranger team via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.