Controversial tree felling programme in Sheffield halted over safety concerns

Sheffield's controversial tree felling programme has been temporarily halted over safety concerns for arborists and stewards.

An arborist at work in Sheffield

Sheffield Council announced today that the programme will be paused for a couple of days for a safety review to be carried out.

Work is expected to resume next week.

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Council contractor Amey is felling trees across the city as part of a £2 billion road improvement programme.

Arborists are felling trees deemed dangerous, dead, diseased, dying or which are said to be damaging streets and pavements.

Objectors to the scheme have staged a number of protests across the city, with demonstrations now held on a daily basis.

Trees earmarked for felling are fenced or cordoned off and a court injunction is in place making it illegal for protesters to enter the safety zones.

But a number of cordons have been breached, leading to a number of stand-offs.

Earlier this month, Amey announced that protesters breaching the cordons would be physically removed by specially trained stewards.

Activity within the zones is being filmed.

More to follow.