FOCC Header

Why does Southwark Council hate trees? Southwark has started felling yet another 40 healthy, mature trees for 'maintenance' - the same excuse Sheffield City Council is using to cut down thousands of street trees.

 

The trees are a row of mature conifers in Camberwell New Cemetery next to graves from the 1990s. They provide nature habitat as well as clean air and cooling for our dense, hot, polluted city.

 

Yet Southwark started their latest attack on nature without the required consultation or discussion with their so-called Cemeteries Stakeholder Group.

 

Southwark gave stakeholders only a few days’ notice, with no information on the number of trees to be felled, their age, condition or even their exact location. This is bird breeding season.

 

And Southwark still has no Cemetery Conservation Management Plan agreed with the community – more than five years overdue.

 

Today, Friends of Camberwell Cemeteries, the Save Southwark Woods campaign have written to Southwark, requesting:

 

1. All felling stop immediately - as unanimously agreed by all community stakeholder groups in the April 2017 Stakeholder Group meeting.

 

2. Include us in all decision making regarding the Camberwell Cemeteries.

 

3. Southwark Council immediately agree the required Conservation Management Plans for the Camberwell Cemeteries with community stakeholders, more than 5 years overdue.

 

Southwark claims these trees must be felled because they are ‘damaging memorials’.

 

But this is clearly disingenuous.

 

Southwark’s whole burial strategy is based on damaging memorials. They are now removing hundreds of memorials, mounding over thousands of public graves, soon to excavate thousands of private graves, and sell them off as ‘new’ burial plots.

 

These trees are in the way of those plans. Hundreds of trees have already been felled in the Camberwell Cemeteries in East Dulwich and Honor Oak for burial plots. Hundreds more trees are to be cut down in Camberwell Old Cemetery woods if Southwark does not stop its attack on nature.

 

Campaigners have been fighting for over three years to protect the cemeteries and make them nature reserves. Over 10,000 have signed our online petition.

 

And Southwark Council has spent three years ignoring them. When will it stop?

 

Below is our letter to John Wade, Southwark Council.

 

For more information contact

Blanche Cameron / Friends of Camberwell cemeteries / Save Southwark Woods Campaign

07731 304 966 / savesouthwarkwoods@gmail.com

www.savesouthwarkwoods.org.uk

 

 

21st July 2017

 

Dear Mr Wade,

 

Re: Unacceptable felling of trees in Camberwell New Cemetery - no consultation with Cemeteries Stakeholder Group

 

Southwark Council’s commencing cutting down of 40 or more healthy mature trees in Camberwell New Cemetery this week is unacceptable and must stop immediately.

 

You gave the Friends of Camberwell Cemeteries, a stakeholder, just a few days’ notice, with no consultation, no information on the number of trees to be felled, their exact location, age or condition, and no opportunity to object or even discuss the felling, in bird breeding season.

 

You claim that these trees must be felled because they are ‘damaging memorials’ but this is clearly disingenuous. Southwark’s whole burial strategy is based on ‘damaging memorials’ - mounding over or excavating all graves, removing memorials, and selling them off as ‘new’ burial plots.  

 

Please explain why Southwark Council has still not agreed the required Conservation Management Plans with community stakeholders, as required and more than 5 years overdue?

 

Your actions have broken the terms of Southwark’s Cemeteries Stakeholder Group, to consult and involve stakeholders in all works.

 

We request:

 

1. All felling stop immediately - as unanimously agreed by all community stakeholder groups in the April 2017 Stakeholder Group meeting.

 

2. You include us in all decision making regarding the Camberwell Cemeteries.

 

3. Southwark Council immediately agree the required Conservation Management Plans for the Camberwell Cemeteries with community stakeholders, more than 5 years overdue.

 

Please respond by return.

 

Sincerely,

 

Blanche Cameron

Friends of Camberwell cemeteries / Save Southwark Woods Campaign

07731 304 966 / savesouthwarkwoods@gmail.com

www.savesouthwarkwoods.org.uk

 

cc:

Camberwell Cemeteries Working Group

Friends of Honor Oak

Friends of One Tree Hill Nature Reserve

Friends of Nunhead Cemetery

London Parks and Gardens Trust

Caring for Gods Acre

Woodland Trust

Southwark pulls a Sheffield, uses ‘maintenance’ as excuse to cut down another area of healthy, mature trees. We say 'stop'.

21st July 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: The first of 40 more trees being cut down because "they are causing damage to memorials and as such distress to the existing grave owners." We ask the council to show us the names of those who are 'distressed'.

 

Below three photos : Hundreds of trees in 2-acre site Area Z in the Old Cemetery already felled by Southwark Council. Second photo: A view of the Camberwell Old Cemetery woods, which Southwark is in the process of clearing.

 

Camberwell Old Cemetery June 2017 Looking Down Lane Camberwell Old Cemetery Woods 2017 CNC Square 28 Cutting CNC Square 28 Pic 3

Below: Trees cut down in March 2017 on beautiful One Tree Hill in Camberwell New Cemetery. When will this end?

IMG_-ncg2k4-1040x780