Council owned trees

Essential health and safety tree work - Blagdon Road Open Space

Background and methodology

Kingston council owns and manages an estimated 13,000 trees and has a duty of care to be a responsible manager and to maintain trees reasonably within the wide range of pressures and risks it faces. 

All of the council’s trees on streets and in parks are regularly inspected for safety reasons by qualified council staff using Visual Tree Assessment (VTA) techniques to undertake assessments. VTA is a standard approach to tree risk assessment consisting of the diagnosis of structural defects and the evaluation of their significance from visible signs and the application of arboricultural biomechanical knowledge.

Inspection and risk 

Kingston council inspects all trees on streets and in parks on a three year cyclical schedule.  The purpose of these inspections is to assess the health of each tree, record any defects and recommend works that can either extend the lifespan of the tree for as long as possible, or control its growth in respect to its surroundings.  

In many cases there will be no works required at the time of inspection.  However there are cases where trees are found to be dead, diseased or decayed and will require removal in order to protect the public, property and the health of surrounding trees.

Certain species of tree, such as Lombardy poplar, have an unpredictable and brittle nature and relatively short life span in urban environments and it is important to manage them carefully in well-used spaces.  

All the trees in Blagdon Road Recreation Ground received a formal and detailed inspection. Sounding tests, used to detect decay and dysfunction, were undertaken and indicated that three Lombardy poplar trees (Populus nigra Italica) have internal decay affecting their structural integrity and require removal on the grounds of safety.  In addition, two newly planted young trees were found to be dead. The remaining trees within the park were deemed to be in a good or reasonable condition at the time of inspection with no work required at this time.

Diseased trees can often appear to be perfectly healthy, but a detailed inspection by a qualified arboriculturalist can reveal problems that are not obvious to the untrained eye.

The Lombardy poplar trees in Blagdon Road Recreation Ground are situated in a high footfall area, adjacent to a children's playground.  As a responsible tree manager the council cannot afford to take risks, particularly where this relates to trees which by their very nature are variable and unpredictable.  Three of the Lombardy poplar trees pose a foreseeable risk after inspection and the council must take action to manage those risks.

Failure to undertake these works will leave the council liable for any accidents that may occur.

Recommended works

The full inspection report for Blagdon Road Rec can be viewed below. Giving due consideration to the condition of the trees upon inspection and to the likelihood and risk involved the report recommends:

  • Removal of 3 Lombardy poplar (Populus nigra Italica) due to decay.  Ref OHQ9, OALK, OALL.

  • Removal of 2 young dead trees (Quercus cerris).  Ref OHQB, OGME.

The date for the works is to be confirmed.

Close-up image of emergency tree works taking place at Blagdon Recreation.

Large scale image of Blagdon Recreation with the trees highlighted for emergency works.

Ref

Species

Age/size

Condition

Works

09PE

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

09PF

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

09PG

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AL1

Himalayan Birch (Betula utilis Jaquemontii)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AL2

Goat Willow (Salix caprea)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0AL4

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Poor

Monitor new planting

0AL5

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Reasonable

 

0AL6

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Poor

Monitor new planting

0AL8

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

70cm+

Reasonable

 

0AL9

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

70cm+

Reasonable

 

0ALC

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

70cm+

Reasonable

 

0ALD

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

70cm+

Reasonable

 

0ALH

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

41 to 70cm

Reasonable

 

0ALJ

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

41 to 70cm

Reasonable

 

0ALK

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

41 to 70cm

Poor

Fell

0ALL

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

41 to 70cm

Poor

Fell

0ALN

Sycamore (Acer psuedoplatanus)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0ALP

Ash (Fraxinus excelsior)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0ALR

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0ALS

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0ALT

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0ALU

Himalayan Birch (Betula utilis Jaquemontii)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0ALV

Himalayan Birch (Betula utilis Jaquemontii)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0ALW

Silver Birch (Betula pendula)

Upto 10cm

Good

 

0ALX

Silver Birch (Betula pendula)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0ALY

Silver Birch (Betula pendula)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0ALZ

Silver Birch (Betula pendula)

Upto 10cm

Good

 

0AM0

Silver Birch (Betula pendula)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0AM1

Wild Cherry (Prunus avium)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0AM2

Ash (Fraxinus excelsior)

11 to 20cm

Reasonable

 

0AM6

Sycamore (Acer psuedoplatanus)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AM7

Lawson Cypress (Chamaecyparis lawsoniana)

41 to 70cm

Reasonable

 

0AM8

Lawson Cypress (Chamaecyparis lawsoniana)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0AM9

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AMA

Turkish Hazel (Corylus colurna)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0AMB

Turkish Hazel (Corylus colurna)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AMC

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AMD

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AME

Field Maple (Acer campestre)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0AMF

Norway Maple (Acer platanoides)

21 to 40cm

Good

 

0AMG

Snake Bark Maple (Acer davidii)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0AMH

Red Maple (Acer rubrum)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0AMK

Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0GMD

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Reasonable

 

0GME

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Dead

Remove

0GMF

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Reasonable

 

0GMG

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Reasonable

 

0GMH

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Reasonable

 

0GYU

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

70cm+

Reasonable

 

0HQ9

Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Italica)

41 to 70cm

Poor

Fell

0HQA

Sycamore (Acer psuedoplatanus)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0HQA

Goat Willow (Salix caprea)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0HQB

Turkey Oak (Quercus cerris)

Upto 10cm

Dead

Remove

0HQC

English Oak (Quercus robur)

11 to 20cm

Reasonable

 

0HQD

Common Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0HQD

Ash (Fraxinus excelsior)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0HQD

Common Elder (Sambucus nigra)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0HQE

English Oak (Quercus robur)

21 to 40cm

Reasonable

 

0HQF

English Oak (Quercus robur)

41 to 70cm

Reasonable

 

0HQG

English Oak (Quercus robur)

41 to 70cm

Reasonable

 

0HQH

English Oak (Quercus robur)

41 to 70cm

Reasonable

 

0HQJ

Sycamore (Acer psuedoplatanus)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

0HQK

Sycamore (Acer psuedoplatanus)

11 to 20cm

Good

 

Last Modified: 03/02/2021 16:34:08