Knowle proposals ‘a folly’ - Sidmouth Arbroetum bosses

DRIVING forces behind a world-first community initiative have branded plans to turn historic parkland at the Knowle into homes a “folly”.

Strong objections to proposals have been lodged by Sidmouth Arboretum leaders who say trees at the site form the “core” of the project and a tourist-attracting trail.

“No council acting responsibly would seek to destroy healthy trees – with their surrounding environmental and social benefits – which form the core of the world’s first community arboretum,” said organiser Diana East.

“It would be folly to cut down established trees when climate change pathogens are already affecting mature trees in other areas of town.

“Knowle historic parkland and gardens are the core for urban biodiversity, linking wildlife corridors around the town.”

She called for a full environmental and ecological survey to be carried out together with an assessment of the visual impact and landscape value of the site.