Tree removal didn’t breach planning rules, says council

After the trees were removed outside The Amble Inn, which is set to open next month. Picture courtesy of The Ambler
After the trees were removed outside The Amble Inn, which is set to open next month. Picture courtesy of The Ambler

A group of trees removed before developers were given planning permission will not need to be replaced, as ‘no breach of planning has taken place’.

Arch, which is the developer for the Amble Inn, at Sandpiper Way, Amble, applied for permission to remove the trees on land in front of the hotel, as part of the landscaping scheme.

However, the county ecologist objected to the scheme, saying it fell short of what was required and should be revised. Amble Town Council also objected to the removal of the trees.

An amended landscape plan was later submitted by Arch; this time it met the approval of the ecologist, who said: ‘I also note and welcome that the removal of trees at the southern limited (sic) has been omitted from the revised scheme.’

The following day, however, workmen removed trees on the land at the fish roundabout. This was before any official decision on the landscaping plans had been made.

It prompted numerous critical comments, but Northumberland County Council has said that there has not been a breach.

A county council spokeswoman said: “We have received a number of comments about the tree removal – and our enforcement team has now investigated this.

“The trees in question are not in the conservation area or protected by a tree preservation order, and there are no conditions on the planning approval for the site which restricts their removal. Removing the trees does not constitute a breach of planning and therefore no formal action is being pursued.

“We are in discussion with the developer about the implementation of the approved landscaping scheme and how this could be supplemented further.”