Ancient St Albans tree is cut down

One of the tree surgeons working on the large tree in Trevelyan place

One of the tree surgeons working on the large tree in Trevelyan place - Credit: Archant

A MAMMOTH tree thought to be almost six centuries old had to be chopped down on Friday after succumbing to a fungal disease.

Gutted residents in Trevelyan Place, St Albans, gathered outside to see the beloved copper beech leave their communal garden following fears it would topple over onto nearby properties. The disease, known as Meripilus Giganteus, is typically found in beech trees and attacks the roots.

Two men in harnesses scaled the enormous tree to remove its branches and a crane safely transported the sawn off wood to ground level.

Celia Heley has lived at the development for 10 years and said they had tried everything to save the tree but it was too sick: “It was so sad to see our lovely old beech come down but they [the tree surgeons] were extremely efficient and professional.

“It is weird not having it here any more.”

Alex Morris, of High Elms Tree Surgery, explained the removal went smoothly and took about a day to carry out with the help of 10 men, which proved quite a spectacle for neighbours: “Quite a lot of old ladies were coming out to see us climb up the tree.”

The tree surgery is returning in the next couple of weeks to remove the stump and head of the Markyate company Shaun Morris said a replacement tree was due to be planted in its place.