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23.02.2010

Riverside Trees Planted

L-R Cllr Celia Hodges, Laurie Harris, Jane Nissen, Richard Everitt
 

L-R Cllr Celia Hodges, Laurie Harris, 
Jane Nissen, Richard Everitt
(click on image to enlarge)

More than £13,500 is being ploughed into tree planting as part of a rolling programme of riverside management.

Specialists have moved into the area upstream of Hammersmith Bridge to begin preparation work.

The Port of London Authority, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, and members of the public have all contributed funds to the project.

On Monday (22), Mayor of Richmond upon Thames Cllr Celia Hodges marked the start of the work by planting a broad leafed lime near St Paul's School.

PLA chief executive Richard Everitt said: "We're using the funds to plant nearly 40 trees at selected locations along an eight kilometre stretch of riverside between Putney and Kew as part of our tree management programme.

"Over the coming years we'll be planting a variety of species to replace some of those we are cutting back to reduce damage to the river bank. The new trees will complement local wildlife, improve the views along the banks, and enhance river safety."

The port authority started riverside works in the area last year after specialist contractors Bartlett Consulting surveyed more than 1,000 trees.

The PLA was particularly concerned by the damage some trees were causing to the revetment walls which line and protect the banks, and others which threatened the safety of river and towpath users.

Trees which presented the most immediate safety risks have been pollarded or felled.

But a programme of tree work in the area will continue over the next 20 years.

All work is done in the winter months to cause minimal disruption to wildlife.

After the planting ceremony, Cllr Celia Hodges, Mayor of Richmond upon Thames, said: "I'm very happy to see the start of this round of tree planting, which is a collaboration between the Council and the Port of London Authority and has come about thanks to the help of a number of people living in the area. They have given time and ideas to the process which has led to a project we hope everyone can get behind.

"Once the trees are all in place the towpath will be an even more pleasant place to walk. Importantly as well, when the most problematic trees have been dealt with, the riverbank walls will be stronger and it will be that bit easier for rowers and sailors to navigate the river."