Pub's landmark tree gets chop

PUBLISHED: 05:44 28 September 2006 | UPDATED: 09:56 24 May 2010

SHOCKED residents and pub patrons are upset that a landmark tree has been given the axe. The licensee at The Walnut Tree pub in Winterstoke Road, on the edge of the Oldmixon estate, cut down the walnut tree

SHOCKED residents and pub patrons are upset that a landmark tree has been given the axe.The licensee at The Walnut Tree pub in Winterstoke Road, on the edge of the Oldmixon estate, cut down the walnut tree on Monday (Sept 18).He said the tree was rotten and could have caused a serious injury if it fell down.But residents and drinkers at the pub are saddened about the loss of the local landmark.Environment experts at North Somerset Council say the walnut tree did not have a tree protection order on it, allowing the owner to cut it down without permission or consultation.A pub regular said: "I think lots of people are going to be outraged by all of this as the walnut tree is a symbol of the Oldmixon. You think of the tree and you think of the estate."It had to be hundreds of years old and the pub was named after it."It was a real shock. I drove past the pub in the morning and the tree was there but by lunchtime it had completely disappeared."We just could not understand why it had been cut down and it's going to be the talk of around here for a long time."One nearby resident said: "I'm quite upset as that tree had been there a long time."The only thing they needed to do was cut down the branches near the conservatory, not the whole tree."It was a local landmark before the pub was there and that's how it got its name."Landlord Jason Bedwell said the decision to cut down the tree was made on safety grounds and plans have been made to plant another one.He has spent more than £60,000 refurbishing the pub and putting in ramps for disabled people since taking over in April.Jason said: "The tree was rotten all the way through and could have fallen on people."It was a pity it had to come down as it was a feature of the pub. We're looking at planting a new walnut tree in a similar spot to the old one.

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