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More than 5,000 diseased ash trees facing axe costing £7m in South Ayrshire


More than 5,000 afflicted ash copse face the axe in South Ayrshire, at a charge of about £7m over the abutting seven years.

South Ayrshire Council has been assessing the accident acquired by the spread of Ash Dieback, which weakens Ash copse to the point area they are a protection risk.

The council’s chiffonier will hear a address on a seven year plan to abode the affair from Depute Chief Executive Mike Newall on Tuesday.

In his report, Mr Newall states: “The afflicted copse can affectation a meaningful accident to protection such as those copse amid abutting to roads, in parks and accessible spaces and abutting to ability lines.

“The accident of the copse will have a large awful appulse on biodiversity and the mural and there will be a abundant bread-and-butter appulse by the choose to administer this disease.”

Ash Dieback is spread by a bane alleged Hymenoscyphus fraxineus.

The spores are appear into the atmosphere, and while they acreage on leaves, they accomplish their way into the timberline and block baptize movement, authoritative the timberline breakable and affecting stability.

This generally outcome in the afterlife of the tree, accretion the likelihood of collapse.

The charge of felling and eradicating one timberline is estimated at £600, a sum which will enhance with aggrandizement each year.

The plan estimates the felling of 700 copse a year. It is accepted which councils will antechamber for the Scottish Government to armamentarium the work.

Mr Newall answered which the Scottish Government had recognised the ‘very absolute accident which these asleep and dying copse will affectation on humans protection calm with the bread-and-butter and ecology impacts’.

The board has inspected 91 % of Ash copse in accessible accessible amplitude and parks and and placed them in one of four categories.

Almost 4,700 are ‘climbable’ authoritative felling further straightforward.

However,  1,783 are in poorer circumstance due to the aftereffect of the disease. These copse are accounted alarming to ascend and crave hobby in the abutting three to six months.

Of the 6,898 copse surveyed in total, all over 16 per cent were begin to be in clandestine ownership.

The analysis also begin which 10 per cent of those copse would not crave felling, abrogation a absolute of 5,216 to fell.

The acknowledgment to the ache is actuality undertaken by both South Ayrshire Council and Ayrshire Roads Alliance.

ARA were tasked with anecdotic the buying of copse which are abutting to roads.

Identified owners would be accountable for accustomed out the felling.

However, if they do not undertake the work, the board would intervene and balance them for the cost.

If an owner cannot be identified, the board will backpack out the work.

The address states which both the board and ARA would have to backpack out and analysis each year, to agenda any abasement in the bloom of copse and booty action.

These inspections would booty six months of the year initially, about due to felling will be quicker appear the end of the seven year programme.

While it outlines the estimated charge of the programme, including surveys, felling and replanting, at an boilerplate of £1m a year over seven years, Mr Newall warns which the banal is abased on ‘future allotment availability’.

He concludes: “Neighbourhood Services and ARA have already articular a meaningful cardinal of Ash copse which are now a accepted accident and crave to be felled as anon as possible.”

He adds which declining to booty action ‘could have austere or baleful consquences’ by breaching its assignment of care, as far as aperture the aperture to bent proceedings.

The chiffonier will accede the plan on Tuesday, March 14.

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