Housing developer who illegally felled up to 40 trees in woodland near the Humber Bridge ordered to replant hundreds more

An East Riding councillor has welcomed a ruling ordering a developer to replant hundreds of trees at a Hessle woodland site where felling left "devastation".

The scene after 40 trees in the woodland site were felled
The scene after 40 trees in the woodland site were felled

Hessle ward member Coun David Nolan said the ruling against developer John England came after 30 to 40 trees were cut down at the town's Tinkler's Pit around 18 months ago.

The Forestry Commission has issued a restocking notice to the developer ordering them to replant 246 trees by June 2023.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

An East Riding Council spokesperson said they welcomed the ruling, adding anyone who felled protected trees without permission or a licence could be liable for prosecution.

The Forestry Commission issued its restocking notice to the developer in late May following an investigation.

The probe found the felling broke the Forestry Act, with replanting now ordered to keep Tinkler's Pit as a woodland area.

Coun Nolan said the site, close to junction of the A63 with the A164 near the Humber Bridge, was historic but lay outside a conservation area and its trees were not legally protected.

He added it was believed that the developer was planning a small housing development on the site.

Coun Nolan said: "The tree belt was an important green boundary and the council would have sought to protect it, but it is now gone.

"The developer started work on a Saturday with heavy equipment including two tractors and a large digger.

"By the following Monday morning the devastation had been completed, as well as a number of trees it also contained wildlife.

"The developer has 40 years of experience but he didn't realise he should have spoken to the council or the Forestry Commission.

"He told me he planned to level the site to create a small housing development."

An East Riding Council spokesperson said: "The recent ruling by the Forestry Commission that the site owner of Tinkler's Pit must replant the trees that he felled without the authorisation of the Forestry Commission is welcomed.

"Tree felling is a legally controlled activity, and in certain circumstances a person may need permission to fell trees from the Forestry Commission, so it is very important that individuals and landowners contact the Forestry Commission to see if they are required to apply for a felling licence.

"Furthermore, permission is required from the council for works to trees that are subject to a Tree Preservation Order or are located within the Conservation Area.

"If in doubt, residents and businesses should ask, otherwise they may be liable to prosecution."