6th February 2022
Esso recently marked 29 trees in the park for removal by spraying a red dot on each one. After examining these trees and comparing them to Esso’s published plans, we had doubts that they had all been correctly identified. We told Esso about this and suggested we should have a meeting with them in the park, before any trees are felled. This would allow them to check that they have marked the right ones and will not be removing any in error.
Esso told us that they know which trees to remove.
No, they don’t.
Esso are only allowed to remove the trees listed in their published Site Specific Plan. This is legally binding so they have to get it right. There are no excuses for any mistakes. When they put a red spot on a tree Esso are stating they have done all the checks and they have no doubts that this is the right tree.
Here are two trees Esso believe they can remove but actually can’t:
T129 (birch) and T125 (holly) have been numbered incorrectly, and are therefore mistakenly marked to be removed. The holly tree they do have permission to remove (T124) has no label or red spot! We hope Esso appreciate our help in identifying the correct one.
Esso can’t even translate their tree survey from the plan to what they see in front of them.
Other trees have been numbered incorrectly and marked with a red dot, but luckily for Esso, they have permission to remove these. If only they could identify them correctly and put the right number on them.
Esso had great difficulty identifying the real T119 but it’s one of the easiest to find because it is so close to a neighbouring sweet chestnut. We simply cannot understand how they could have got this one wrong.
T119 was put on Esso’s original list of trees to remove when it was published over 2 years ago. At the time, we tied ribbons round all the trees on the list. Our ribbon is still on T119, and yet Esso still couldn’t identify it and mark it correctly.
We have informed Esso and Rushmoor Borough Council about the errors. RBC are the land owner and local planning authority so we hope that they can to take action to ensure that Esso comply with the permission they have been granted.
We hope that Esso will rectify these mistakes and improve their working practices to prevent any additional serious errors from being made.