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Southwark Council has informed cemetery friends groups that they are to start cutting down trees in new wooded areas without Church permission or input from groups.

 

The Friends of Camberwell Cemeteries (FOCC) have today informed the Church of England that Southwark Council intends to cut down hundreds of trees on consecrated ground without applying for Church permission.

 

The Council is calling the tree felling in Camberwell Old Cemetery ‘woodland management’ as if this exempts them from applying for Church planning permission called faculty.

 

But these woods are on consecrated ground so Southwark must apply for permission.

 

In 2015, Southwark removed the Woodland Tree Preservation Order on Camberwell Old Cemetery, a Grade 1 SINC in East Dulwich.

 

95% of trees across the remaining ten acres of woods are now unprotected, including English Oak, Ash, Horse Chestnut, Hawthorn, Sycamore, Wild Pear, Holly, Hornbeam and Yew.

 

But Southwark Council is still required to apply for Church permission to fell trees, during which there is a public consultation process.

 

Southwark has a history of dodging planning. In 2016, over 900 people wrote to the Church objecting to Southwark Council felling two acres of woods on consecrated ground in Camberwell Old Cemetery, triggering a Church Consistory Court process.

 

So Southwark felled the woods before the Church made its decision.

 

Southwark also claims not a single tree of 75mm-150mm diameter was felled in Area Z. It is now a bare field.

 

The so-called ‘woodland management’ of Areas J, K and L is far more extensive and damaging.

 

Hundreds of trees are to be felled for ‘new’ burial plots over thousands of people buried in the woods.

 

Southwark Council has no Conservation Management Plan for Camberwell Old Cemetery, required to be agreed with FOCC and other groups before any works take place – especially ‘woodland management’.

 

"We believe Peter John's Southwark Council is misleading the public and trying to dodge legal planning processes in its endless quest for inner-city burial plots,” said Blanche Cameron, Chair of FOCC.

 

“They are destroying beautiful woods, nature and heritage for burial plots. They must be stopped.”

 

The Friends Group has written to Southwark Council and the Church of England stating they do not give permission for any tree felling in Camberwell Old Cemetery.

 

FOCC’s notices to Southwark Council and the Church of England are below.

 

FOCC is fighting to save the Camberwell Cemeteries as nature reserves with respect for the dead and woods and nature for the living.

 

 

 

18th April 2017

 

Dear Cllr Peter John, Cllr Ian Wingfield,

 

Legal requirement to apply for Church of England faculty to fell trees on consecrated ground

 

We are writing to remind Southwark Council that Areas J, K and L in Camberwell Old Cemetery woods are on consecrated ground.

 

Southwark therefore has a legal duty to apply to the Diocese of Southwark for Church planning permission to fell trees over 75mm diameter.

 

Your letter states the felling is ‘to progress projects’ – hundreds of ‘new’ burial plots over thousands of people buried in the woods in Areas J, K and L.

 

We do not believe you have applied to the Diocese for faculty as we would have been notified of the public consultation period.

 

We do not believe no tree over 75mm is to be cut down during the felling in these areas which you are misleadingly calling ‘woodland management’.

 

Last year, you felled two acres of woods in Area Z, claiming not a single tree of 75mm-150mm diameter was felled. These two acres of woods are now a bare field.

 

Southwark Council has no Conservation Management Plan for Camberwell Old Cemetery, required to be drawn up and agreed with FOCC and other groups before any works take place – especially ‘woodland management’.

 

Southwark Council is denying the public our legal democratic process in the management of the cemeteries.

 

We do not give our permission for any tree felling in Camberwell Old Cemetery.

 

We request Southwark Council:

 

1)    Follow Church legal process and apply for planning permission to fell woods on consecrated ground

 

2)    Meet with FOCC and other groups immediately to agree Conservation Management Plans for Camberwell Old and New Cemeteries

 

Please acknowledge receipt.

 

Sincerely,

 

Blanche Cameron

Chair, Friends of Camberwell Cemeteries

The Save Southwark Woods Campaign

Cc:

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby

Bishop of Southwark Christopher Chessun

Diocesan Chancellor Philip Petchey

Diocesan Registrar Paul Morris

Helen Monger, Director, London Parks and Gardens Trust

Richard Barnes, Woodland Trust

Harriet Carty, Director, Caring for God's Acre

Camberwell Cemeteries Working Group

Dave Morris, London Friends of Greenspaces Network

Tony Leach, Parks for London

Southwark Council trying to dodge planning again, felling more cemetery woods without permission

18th April 2017

www.SaveSouthwarkWoods.org.uk    |    savesouthwarkwoods@gmail.com    |    @southwarkwoods    |    Facebook Page Save Southwark Woods

6 SAVE SOUTHWARK WOODS LOGO TWO ACRES OF WOODS CUT DOWN CAMBERWELL OLD CEMETER

Above: Ten more acres of beautiful inner city woods over thousands of graves to be felled for inner city burial plots.

 

Below: Hundreds of trees in 2-acre site Area Z felled in February 2016 by Southwark Council without permission. To the left hand side of the fence are the newly targeted Areas J, K, and L.

SSL24263 2017_03_10 TELEGRAPH - WAR GRAVES LOST AS COURT GI Camberwell Old Lanes April 2017

18th April 2017

 

Dear Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, Bishop of Southwark Christopher Chessun, Diocesan Chancellor Philip Petchey and Registrar Paul Morris,

 

Notice that Southwark Council intends to fell trees on consecrated ground in Camberwell Old Cemetery

 

We are writing to inform you that Southwark Council intend to fell trees in Areas J, K and L on consecrated ground in Camberwell Old Cemetery, Diocese of Southwark.

 

We do not believe Southwark Council has applied to the Diocese for faculty as we would have been notified of the public consultation period.

 

We also do not believe that no tree over 75mm is to be felled during this so-called ‘woodland management’ as hundreds of trees of this size exist in these areas.

 

Southwark Council has no Conservation Management Plan for Camberwell Old or New Cemeteries, required to be drawn up and agreed with FOCC and other groups before any works take place, especially ‘woodland management’.

 

Southwark Council is denying the public our legal democratic process in the management of the cemeteries.

 

We request you to remind Southwark Council of its legal duty to apply for Church planning permission to fell trees on consecrated ground.

 

Please acknowledge receipt.

 

Sincerely,

 

Blanche Cameron

Chair, Friends of Camberwell Cemeteries

The Save Southwark Woods Campaign

 

Cc:

Southwark Council Leader Peter John

Cllr Ian Wingfield, Member for Public Realm and Environment

Helen Monger, Director, London Parks and Gardens Trust

Richard Barnes, Woodland Trust

Harriet Carty, Director, Caring for God's Acre

Camberwell Cemeteries Working Group

Dave Morris, London Friends of Greenspaces Network

Tony Leach, Parks for London