Backlash grows in battle over hedge

Picture by Julian Brown 14/08/17

The area where the hedge has already been cut down

Residents are angry that a developer wants to cut down an historic hedge that has been at the back of their properties for 100 years in Poulton
Picture by Julian Brown 14/08/17 The area where the hedge has already been cut down Residents are angry that a developer wants to cut down an historic hedge that has been at the back of their properties for 100 years in Poulton
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Residents on a Poulton road were dismayed by the partial destruction of an historic hedgerow behind their homes.

Now they fear the rest of the 100-year-old hedge will face a similar fate as property developers Wainhomes continues work to build new houses to the rear of Moorland Avenue.

Businesswoman Mary Cowley, who has lived on the street for 10 years, said: “I caught them one morning cutting down the hedge with chainsaws and I ran out and stopped them.

“It’s a boundary hedgerow and it’s not theirs to take.

“Planning permission was given - but not to remove the hedgerow.

“They say it’s their land but they have not provided any evidence to support that claim.

“This hedgerow has been there for 100 years and is home to nesting birds.

“It’s our only privacy from the housing estate that’s being built there.

“Little by little developers are taking what little is left of our countryside.”

A Wyre Council spokesman said the hedgerow was not protected under current regulations.

They added: “Any dispute over who owns the hedgerow is a private matter for the landowners involved.”

They added that Wainhomes was advised to consult residents before removing the hedge, though Mary says neither she nor her neighbours were informed.

Peter Barlow, managing director at Wainhomes, said: “The road entrance is currently under construction and we have the necessary evidence that the hedge is wholly within the registered land title of Wainhomes.

“While a small section may have been affected by part of the road works at a pinch point, the intention will be to replant once the road is complete.

“We are currently looking ways of retaining the hedge while constructing the carriageway as we see it as a pleasant soft boundary which we would desire to retain as it will clearly make the site more appealing to prospective purchasers of the executive quality homes proposed for this development.

“There will have to be some heavy pruning in any event which is good practice in order to ensure the long term vitality of the hedge.

“Should any further areas require removal we would be providing semi mature replacements.”