Elms could block Brighton secondary school's sports pitch

The Argus: Elms could block Brighton secondary school's sports pitch Elms could block Brighton secondary school's sports pitch

Two elm trees could stand in the way of a Brighton secondary school’s plan for an all-weather sports pitch.

Campaign group Save Our School Trees argued against the pitch at Dorothy Stringer School – attracting support from 559 people on a petition.

Its concerns about the loss of mature trees which are part of the National Elm Collection on the site are among the reasons planning officers at Brighton and Hove City Council have recommended the project is refused at a meeting to discuss the scheme on Wednesday.

There are also concerns about how noise and light from the pitch would impact on neighbours.

But there have been 235 letters of support for the new facility, as current pitches are described to be “virtually unusable” in the autumn and winter.

Supporters claim the pitch will pro- mote an active lifestyle, benefiting the people of the city and will dovetail with government policy to promote physical exercise and sport as a way to develop good health and fight obesity.

A school spokeswoman said: “Should the project be turned down it would be a huge disappointment and wasted opportunity both for our students and the local community; however we are very much looking forward to taking this proposal forward at the planning meeting next week.”

David Macdonald, 45, Loder Road resident and member of Save Our School Trees, said: “Obviously we’re pleased with the recommendation and I think it’s a victory for common sense.

“But we are not there yet and it will be down to the committee to decide on Wednesday.

“At the end of the day these trees are a very important part of our landscape and we believe they should remain.”

Preston Park and Fiveways Local Action Team, Councillors Ann and Ken Norman and Brighton and Hove Wildlife Forum all object to the plans while Sussex County Football Association Ltd and Active Sussex support the facility.

 

Comments (10)

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9:50am Fri 6 Dec 13

The Prophet of Doom says...

Paging glory-hound Lucas!
Paging glory-hound Lucas! The Prophet of Doom

10:26am Fri 6 Dec 13

tykemison says...

So Sussex County Football Association support cutting down these Great mature Elm Trees for the sake of another sodding football pitch? You are an absolute disgrace, are you really that stupid to even comprehend losing these magnificent Trees for the sake of people keeping fit kicking a ball around? Has it escaped your miniscule minds that without tree's you wont be able to live let alone play footy? Idiots.
So Sussex County Football Association support cutting down these Great mature Elm Trees for the sake of another sodding football pitch? You are an absolute disgrace, are you really that stupid to even comprehend losing these magnificent Trees for the sake of people keeping fit kicking a ball around? Has it escaped your miniscule minds that without tree's you wont be able to live let alone play footy? Idiots. tykemison

10:55am Fri 6 Dec 13

Jagmanmc says...

We have lost so many Elm trees around Brighton and Hove due to Dutch Elm disease over the years. These trees must be left standing.
We have lost so many Elm trees around Brighton and Hove due to Dutch Elm disease over the years. These trees must be left standing. Jagmanmc

11:05am Fri 6 Dec 13

Fight_Back says...

Why can't they build the pitches on the area south of what used to be called M block ? No trees would need to be cut down.
Why can't they build the pitches on the area south of what used to be called M block ? No trees would need to be cut down. Fight_Back

11:24am Fri 6 Dec 13

fredflintstone1 says...

To focus on two elms is to greatly oversimplify the issue here, especially as there are many other trees involved! This is fundamentally about a small clique of people in an ecoschool who want to destroy rather than conserve the unique habitat on this site, in order to make money through letting the proposed pitches. It is not even about increasing the opportunity for kids to play more sport - in fact, quite the reverse.

There was never any real support for these plans, as reflected by the fact that Dorothy Stringer has over 1700 pupils, representing maybe some 1500 families, as well as a large number of staff, and yet can only muster a total of 235 letters in support, in spite of intensive canvassing of parents and seeking help from sports groups too.

This alone is reason enough to reject these proposals. In fact, many parents and pupils openly signed the petition which attracted 559 signatures opposing the plans for this unwanted and unnecessary elitist development.

The proposal involves fencing off a huge area of the field, cutting down over 50 trees (not just two elms) and building a 4 metre high fence all around around the site. The area is so big that it even takes land from Balfour Junior School, creating a massive wildlife-free development zone.

The clear message here is that if you can afford to pay, then you will be allowed to play. Is this what we want for our children - denying them the opportunity to have a kick-around out of school hours? Locking them out of their grounds? There are plenty of other under-utilised floodlit pitches available to rent in the city.

The campus there has recently been proposed to become a Local Wild Nature Reserve, and is home to a host of rare species ranging from the brown banded carder bee to bats. All will be threatened by this pointless development.

It is really strange to see that Green Councillor Sue Shanks is so in favour of this proposal. How can any Green councillor support such totally unjustifiable destruction of habitat? It seems that the Greens simply lurch from one self-made crisis to another. Following on from the Seven Dials fiasco, where one tree was involved, now they appear to want to destroy whole ecosystems, going against the advice and recommendations of council officers! How can they expect to retain any credibility - locally or nationally - on this basis?
To focus on two elms is to greatly oversimplify the issue here, especially as there are many other trees involved! This is fundamentally about a small clique of people in an ecoschool who want to destroy rather than conserve the unique habitat on this site, in order to make money through letting the proposed pitches. It is not even about increasing the opportunity for kids to play more sport - in fact, quite the reverse. There was never any real support for these plans, as reflected by the fact that Dorothy Stringer has over 1700 pupils, representing maybe some 1500 families, as well as a large number of staff, and yet can only muster a total of 235 letters in support, in spite of intensive canvassing of parents and seeking help from sports groups too. This alone is reason enough to reject these proposals. In fact, many parents and pupils openly signed the petition which attracted 559 signatures opposing the plans for this unwanted and unnecessary elitist development. The proposal involves fencing off a huge area of the field, cutting down over 50 trees (not just two elms) and building a 4 metre high fence all around around the site. The area is so big that it even takes land from Balfour Junior School, creating a massive wildlife-free development zone. The clear message here is that if you can afford to pay, then you will be allowed to play. Is this what we want for our children - denying them the opportunity to have a kick-around out of school hours? Locking them out of their grounds? There are plenty of other under-utilised floodlit pitches available to rent in the city. The campus there has recently been proposed to become a Local Wild Nature Reserve, and is home to a host of rare species ranging from the brown banded carder bee to bats. All will be threatened by this pointless development. It is really strange to see that Green Councillor Sue Shanks is so in favour of this proposal. How can any Green councillor support such totally unjustifiable destruction of habitat? It seems that the Greens simply lurch from one self-made crisis to another. Following on from the Seven Dials fiasco, where one tree was involved, now they appear to want to destroy whole ecosystems, going against the advice and recommendations of council officers! How can they expect to retain any credibility - locally or nationally - on this basis? fredflintstone1

11:24am Fri 6 Dec 13

fredflintstone1 says...

To focus on two elms is to greatly oversimplify the issue here, especially as there are many other trees involved! This is fundamentally about a small clique of people in an ecoschool who want to destroy rather than conserve the unique habitat on this site, in order to make money through letting the proposed pitches. It is not even about increasing the opportunity for kids to play more sport - in fact, quite the reverse.

There was never any real support for these plans, as reflected by the fact that Dorothy Stringer has over 1700 pupils, representing maybe some 1500 families, as well as a large number of staff, and yet can only muster a total of 235 letters in support, in spite of intensive canvassing of parents and seeking help from sports groups too.

This alone is reason enough to reject these proposals. In fact, many parents and pupils openly signed the petition which attracted 559 signatures opposing the plans for this unwanted and unnecessary elitist development.

The proposal involves fencing off a huge area of the field, cutting down over 50 trees (not just two elms) and building a 4 metre high fence all around around the site. The area is so big that it even takes land from Balfour Junior School, creating a massive wildlife-free development zone.

The clear message here is that if you can afford to pay, then you will be allowed to play. Is this what we want for our children - denying them the opportunity to have a kick-around out of school hours? Locking them out of their grounds? There are plenty of other under-utilised floodlit pitches available to rent in the city.

The campus there has recently been proposed to become a Local Wild Nature Reserve, and is home to a host of rare species ranging from the brown banded carder bee to bats. All will be threatened by this pointless development.

It is really strange to see that Green Councillor Sue Shanks is so in favour of this proposal. How can any Green councillor support such totally unjustifiable destruction of habitat? It seems that the Greens simply lurch from one self-made crisis to another. Following on from the Seven Dials fiasco, where one tree was involved, now they appear to want to destroy whole ecosystems, going against the advice and recommendations of council officers! How can they expect to retain any credibility - locally or nationally - on this basis?
To focus on two elms is to greatly oversimplify the issue here, especially as there are many other trees involved! This is fundamentally about a small clique of people in an ecoschool who want to destroy rather than conserve the unique habitat on this site, in order to make money through letting the proposed pitches. It is not even about increasing the opportunity for kids to play more sport - in fact, quite the reverse. There was never any real support for these plans, as reflected by the fact that Dorothy Stringer has over 1700 pupils, representing maybe some 1500 families, as well as a large number of staff, and yet can only muster a total of 235 letters in support, in spite of intensive canvassing of parents and seeking help from sports groups too. This alone is reason enough to reject these proposals. In fact, many parents and pupils openly signed the petition which attracted 559 signatures opposing the plans for this unwanted and unnecessary elitist development. The proposal involves fencing off a huge area of the field, cutting down over 50 trees (not just two elms) and building a 4 metre high fence all around around the site. The area is so big that it even takes land from Balfour Junior School, creating a massive wildlife-free development zone. The clear message here is that if you can afford to pay, then you will be allowed to play. Is this what we want for our children - denying them the opportunity to have a kick-around out of school hours? Locking them out of their grounds? There are plenty of other under-utilised floodlit pitches available to rent in the city. The campus there has recently been proposed to become a Local Wild Nature Reserve, and is home to a host of rare species ranging from the brown banded carder bee to bats. All will be threatened by this pointless development. It is really strange to see that Green Councillor Sue Shanks is so in favour of this proposal. How can any Green councillor support such totally unjustifiable destruction of habitat? It seems that the Greens simply lurch from one self-made crisis to another. Following on from the Seven Dials fiasco, where one tree was involved, now they appear to want to destroy whole ecosystems, going against the advice and recommendations of council officers! How can they expect to retain any credibility - locally or nationally - on this basis? fredflintstone1

12:29pm Fri 6 Dec 13

tykemison says...

Hello Mr Flintstone!! What a sensible post! Although I agree this idiotic planning proposal is not only about the two Elm tree's, the intention of above posts is not to"simplify"the enormity of their greedy sadistic destruction of the area,My rant was about the local football association being so ridiculously short sighted and I feel they are acting in a disgraceful manner! I have signed said petition and believe/hope our represenrative's will see through this ghastly plan!
Hello Mr Flintstone!! What a sensible post! Although I agree this idiotic planning proposal is not only about the two Elm tree's, the intention of above posts is not to"simplify"the enormity of their greedy sadistic destruction of the area,My rant was about the local football association being so ridiculously short sighted and I feel they are acting in a disgraceful manner! I have signed said petition and believe/hope our represenrative's will see through this ghastly plan! tykemison

1:33pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Fight_Back says...

Fight_Back wrote:
Why can't they build the pitches on the area south of what used to be called M block ? No trees would need to be cut down.
I note the person that gave me thumbs down for the idea didn't have the guts to explain why it's a bad idea !
[quote][p][bold]Fight_Back[/bold] wrote: Why can't they build the pitches on the area south of what used to be called M block ? No trees would need to be cut down.[/p][/quote]I note the person that gave me thumbs down for the idea didn't have the guts to explain why it's a bad idea ! Fight_Back

3:19pm Fri 6 Dec 13

fredflintstone1 says...

tykemison wrote:
Hello Mr Flintstone!! What a sensible post! Although I agree this idiotic planning proposal is not only about the two Elm tree's, the intention of above posts is not to"simplify"the enormity of their greedy sadistic destruction of the area,My rant was about the local football association being so ridiculously short sighted and I feel they are acting in a disgraceful manner! I have signed said petition and believe/hope our represenrative's will see through this ghastly plan!
Thanks! My comment was picking up from the Argus headline. I completely agree with you.
[quote][p][bold]tykemison[/bold] wrote: Hello Mr Flintstone!! What a sensible post! Although I agree this idiotic planning proposal is not only about the two Elm tree's, the intention of above posts is not to"simplify"the enormity of their greedy sadistic destruction of the area,My rant was about the local football association being so ridiculously short sighted and I feel they are acting in a disgraceful manner! I have signed said petition and believe/hope our represenrative's will see through this ghastly plan![/p][/quote]Thanks! My comment was picking up from the Argus headline. I completely agree with you. fredflintstone1

6:38pm Sat 7 Dec 13

Grayhughes1 says...

.
. Grayhughes1

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