FIFTY trees will be felled if controversial plans for a health centre are given the go-ahead.
Campaigners today spoke of their shock at a planning inquiry this week after it was revealed the trees, which include shrubbery and hedges, would be removed.
Developers Rushcliffe appealed against Wyre Council’s decision to refuse plans for a three-storey health facility in Poulton in July last year.
The proposals also include a new St Chad’s Hall, refurbishment to Vicarage Park and new tennis courts at Moorland Tennis Club, off Breck Road, to accommodate St Chad’s Tennis Club members who would lose their courts to make way for the development.
But during the fourth day of inquiry, residents heard how 50 trees would be felled as part of the Vicarage Park improvement scheme.
Concerned Poulton resident John Bailie said the number of trees had come as a shock.
He said; “We were obviously aware right from the beginning that more than 50 per cent of the footprint of this building is to stand on park land.
“And we knew a number of trees would be sacrificed, but we were all surprised by the quantity.
“I know we are not talking about 50 huge oaks trees, that would be a forest, but nevertheless for just one tree to come down, especially the beautiful willow, would be a tragedy.”
Harry Ashworth, managing director of Rushcliffe Developers said the scheme included trees already scheduled to be felled.
He said: “We are not planning to take out 50 prize trees, but trees that would be taken down anyway.
“That also includes shrubbery and scrub and smaller trees that have grown of their own accord.
“The idea is to improve the quality of the park itself and to allow new trees, which we would plant as part of the development, to grow better.”
The planning inquiry held at the Civic Centre in Poulton has now been adjourned for a second time.
It is now scheduled to reopen on Monday, September 26 at noon.
The next meeting will also include a site visit and a decision will be made in six to eight weeks after that.