LETTER: Society’s tree campaign

The Worthing Society campaign to ‘Save the Trees’ in the town’s Montague Quarter continues!

Readers may recall the society previously suggested the possibility of a ‘Tree Café’ design surrounding the trees as an attractive alternative to the glass kiosk for Patisserie Valerie, which will necessitate felling these historic sycamore trees. We understand the developer, New River Retail Ltd, responded to our proposal by stating that the trees are causing structural damage to the surrounding buildings so need to be removed.

Enquiries at Worthing Borough Council confirmed that documents submitted as part of the Planning Application in 2015 did not contain a ‘subsidence report’ and the arboricultural statement made no reference to damage by the tree roots.

The Worthing Society wrote to the CEO of New River several weeks ago inviting the company to share any new relevant information about potential structural damage to neighbouring buildings but to date we are still awaiting a reply.

We therefore continue to urge the developer to step back from the decision to fell these much-loved urban trees and explore any means possible to retain them.

I must add that the Worthing Society welcomes new business such as Patisserie Valerie to the town but considers regeneration should complement the town’s existing character.

These sycamore trees are an important part of the Montague Quarter which is within a conservation area.

Please don’t let this be their last Christmas! If you care about saving these magnificent urban trees have your say and please lobby your local councillor and MP, or email New River Retail Ltd at info@nrr.co.uk or write to 37 Maddox Street, London W1S 2PP. Email Patisserie Valerie with your views at: headoffice@patisserieholdings.co.uk

Thank you for reading this letter.

Susan Belton

Worthing Society Chairman

Selden Lane, Worthing

www.worthingsociety.org.uk