Armley residents have expressed their anger at what they claim is ‘excessive’ tree and vegetation clearance work undertaken by Network Rail’s contractors on the railway cutting next to the Aviaries estate.
Campaigners from the Armley Trees group say contractors have stripped a section of the the bank next to the green almost bare of biodiversity, including small trees and vegetation which they had originally been told were to be left untouched.
Campaigners say work was to only entail selected felling of a ‘clump’ of around 20 silver birch trees above the retaining wall in the area of the railway cutting next to the green and close to the old Armley Canal Road Station.
An Armley Trees spokesperson said:
“On waking on Sunday morning, local residents were aghast to see that — instead of sticking to the brief to only cut down the ‘clump’ of silver birch trees — a wide section of the bank had been completely cleared of all vegetation and trees, from the green metal fence down to the retaining wall.
“Small trees (including oaks), bushes, ground cover and regrowth from the healthy trees that were felled next to the green in 2019 had been cut down and removed, leaving only a line of trampled brambles at the top of the slope.”
WLD contacted Network Rail for comment last Thursday teatime. Network Rail Media Relations Manager Amy Brenndorfer said today: “In this instance, we won’t be commenting.”
As previously reported, Network Rail have previously said the tree felling programme was taking place as part of essential safety work.
Armley Trees is made up of people who live in the Armley Park Road area who are standing up for their local environment and campaigning for meaningful community engagement with Network Rail.
It was set up last year following concerns about tree felling next to Armley Park Road and Armley Park woods, off Canal Road.
Follow the Armley Trees blog here.