Abbey trees plea

PUBLISHED: 11:09 13 August 2009 | UPDATED: 14:19 06 May 2010

SIR - The planting of a commemorative rose by the Abbey to keep alive the memory of the vistims of nuclear weapons is rightly applauded. What may not have been noticed is that the rose replaces a commemorative cherry tree understandably and appropriately

SIR - The planting of a commemorative rose by the Abbey to keep alive the memory of the vistims of nuclear weapons is rightly applauded.

What may not have been noticed is that the rose replaces a commemorative cherry tree understandably and appropriately planted in the Abbey Orchard.

Whether the Abbey Orchard is the exact orginal location of the Abbey's ancient orchard (like the Abbey's vinyard - or Vintry) doesn't so much matter as much as the preservation and replacement of trees there.

It probably escapes most people's notice that there are no fruit trees, apple or otherwise, in the Abbey 'Orchard' or that there is a policy of letting trees die and not replacing them so that the orchard is becoming a green desert.

English Heritage has been blamed for not allowing any soil disturbance due to the area's Scheduled Ancient Monument staus but appear unwilling to look at alternatives to provide space for some of Hertfordshire's endangered native fruit trees (there used to be 6,000 varieties - many local, like St Albans Pippin, originally from Kent).

Meanwhile a creeping desolation is spreading where there should be at least some greenery and blossom. And it is being maintained at Council expense. Time for restoration.

Time for http://abbeyorchardproject.org/ petition.htm

JOHN GUNNER

Tudor Road

St Albans

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