Council cites safety reasons for removal of Clinton Street elm

TIMBER: Clinton Street's Peter Rorke wants council to have more staff caring what the city's oldest trees. Photo: DECLAN RURENGA 0811drtree1
TIMBER: Clinton Street's Peter Rorke wants council to have more staff caring what the city's oldest trees. Photo: DECLAN RURENGA 0811drtree1

A CLINTON Street resident has called on Orange City Council to do more to protect and conserve the city’s historic trees.

Peter Rorke contacted council before they partially removed an elm tree with a 7.5-centimetre crack in it.

Council’s spokesman Nick Redmond said staff inspected and removed trees which were unsafe, but Mr Rorke said action could have been taken earlier which “might have saved the tree”.

He said some of the elms in the neighbourhood were up to a century old.

“When you lose something that’s 100 years old, you don’t get the benefits for another 100 years,” he said.

“We need to conserve what we’ve got. I would like to see more parks and gardens staff employed.”

Mr Redmond said while that particular tree “was unlikely to be a safety concern overnight” it did need to be removed to avoid potential safety issues at a later date.

“The same tree was inspected earlier this year and while it was due to have some dead branches removed it was not considered a high priority,” he explained.

Mr Redmond said council relied on residents to be their “eyes and ears” and report concerns about trees.

A different species of tree will planted in the elm’s place.