Great Missenden and The Lee Parish Council representatives met with HS2 Main Works Contactors (EKFB) on Friday to discuss the proposed removal of trees adjacent to and near Leather Lane.
Similar meetings were held, by EKFB, with the Chiltern Conservation Board, Buckinghamshire Council and our local MP’s office.
All of the meetings arose from the concerns expressed (on the ground, in emails and on-line) about the extent of tree felling in this area.
EKFB have given assurances that they are reviewing all “reasonable practical” steps to minimise the number of existing trees to be felled, taking account of the permanent infrastructure needed for the railway and the construction constraints of the project. As a result of this review, it is thought that approx. 40% of the affected trees will definitely need to be felled to allow the railway and permanent infrastructure to be built and 30% can definitely be left in place (see picture above). The remaining 30% is the subject of further, more detailed, review, taking account of the design of the earthworks, drainage, ecology and other construction constraints. The parish councils expressed a strong wish that, if possible, all of this remaining 30% should also be reprieved, if necessary, by changing some of these design constraints and by integrating the oaks into the future tree-planting programme for this area.
This more detailed review will take place over the next fortnight. Until then, only the trees directly on the line-of-route of the railway and the realigned Leather Lane with the internal access road, will be removed subject to ecological inspections.
Cllr Mike Johnstone, HS2 Lead GMPC