Condemned park tree to live on in carving

An artist's impression of the work
An artist's impression of the work

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A CONDEMNED tree in Gosport’s Stanley Park is set to live on as artwork the community can enjoy for the next 100 years.

Safety concerns meant the prominent Monterey cypress tree was set to be removed but Gosport Borough Council has arranged for the trunk to stay in place and be carved into a piece of art.

Cllr Graham Burgess, chairman of the council’s Community Board, said: ‘Trees often get to a point where there is a risk that large branches will start to fall off them. Something needed to be done to this tree to prevent it becoming dangerous.

‘I’m delighted we have been able to find a way that it can continue to be positive addition for everyone using Stanley Park.’

The carving is being done by environmental artist, and former Gosport countryside ranger, Paul Sivell who has completed similar work for Southampton City Council, Portchester Crematorium and the Royal Horticultural Society Gardens.

The carving will show a range of wildlife and nature with a depiction of the borough’s longboat emblem at the top.

Paul said: ‘I’m really looking forward to this project, I have strong links to Gosport and it’s great to know I’m contributing something to the area.

‘This carving should last for 70 to 100 years so hopefully a lot of people will have the chance to enjoy it.’

Work on the tree is expected to start in late spring.