Woman climbs tree in protest at Milton

A CAMPAIGNER climbed a tree to protest against plans for large-scale housing development.

Sunday, 12th June 2016, 9:40 am
Updated Monday, 13th June 2016, 1:27 pm

Tracey Jones climbed a tree near St James Hospital in Milton to make a strong statement about possible plans to build up to 400 homes on the site.

Hundreds of trees, which currently have tree preservation orders, could be threatened by development.

Some trees have already been chopped down in developments nearby.

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Tracey, 49, a gardener from Fratton, said: ‘I’m climbing a tree because I feel strongly about trees being cut down.

‘Trees are really important. They are important for wildlife and help prevent climate change.

‘They also help with air pollution. There are so few green spaces left in Portsmouth and this is a really important green space.’

Kathee Pitt, 64, from Fratton and a member of Portsmouth Friends of the Earth, said she was ‘appalled’ by the prospect of trees being chopped down.

She said: ‘Friends of the Earth are promoting clean air in cities.

‘If we go on cutting down trees and concreting over vast swathes of cities, we are going to decrease the wildlife.

‘What we lack in Portsmouth is a city farm for people to find out how food is produced. This would be an ideal location.’

Kevin Doyle, from Keep Milton Green, said one report suggested there were around 900 protected trees.

He said: ‘A Tree Preservation Order does not protect trees from being cut down. It’s absolutely bizarre.’

Land has been acquired by the Homes and Communities Agency, but no firm decisions have been made about the site’s future.