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Garden News

As residents will know we are in the middle of a 50-year Masterplan, approved several years ago, to remove & re-plant trees in the Garden. We also regularly pollard the trees every two years to stem their further growth.

However this year’s plan was halted mid-process in March, leaving three tree stumps & incomplete pollarding, & several residents have called for an explanation of this.

Enquiries by the Board revealed that the correct permissions had not been obtained by our tree agency which triggered an investigation by Westminster Council into a possible planning breach. If it’s found that an offence has been committed that could mean a warning or other penalty for the tree agency as being the liable party. The Garden has now had a written apology from them.

The Board will communicate the outcome to residents as soon as it has been informed by Westminster. Meanwhile it has re-assured the Council that our Garden always follows correct procedures.

The Board’s own investigation revealed that the agreed sequence of trees to be removed in the Masterplan had not been followed (which was the reason that no formal notice was given to residents) & the Board has taken the necessary action to address this.

Planning permission for pollarding has now been granted but due to the practical constraints of doing the work in the Summer months when the trees are in full leaf it has been put back to the Winter when it will be easier & less hazardous.

The remaining three stumps will be ground down to path level as soon as our tree suppliers have time in their schedule.

The Board is recommending that the whole question of the Masterplan be re-visited at our annual AGM on July 2nd. It also wants to open a discussion then on the role & responsibilities of Directors & the process by which we can ensure that every Director acts at all times in accordance with the wishes of the Board & the wider community.

Less than a month to go now to the Fun Day on Saturday 29th June & the time-table has been finalised as follows:

1–4 pm: Face-painting, pony rides

1-5.30 pm: Bouncy castles, surf board simulator

3-5 pm: Lucas Jet Circus performance in the marquee

3-4 pm: The Great Formosa Bake-Off competition*

5–6 pm: Traditional sports day races, with Tug of War challenge

5-6 pm: Kids’ disco party with music statues & other fun games

6-9 pm: Live music by Havana Good Times & salsa dancing with DJ disco music in between the sets, plus a mystery guest....

Please will parents be sure to supervise their children at all times since the party organisers can’t take any responsibility for them. Also don’t forget that you will need your fob on the day to get into the Garden.

Last but certainly not least we would like to thank our sponsors, the Hampstead Orthodontic Practice, Winkworth’s estate agents & our own Westbourne Management, for their generous support.

  • There are two age categories for this year’s Bake Off, kindly organised once again by Susan Wright: 12 years & under, who are invited to produce biscuits or cup cakes, & 13 years plus, who should bring a celebration cake or a tea loaf. No need to enter in advance – just turn up on the day & bring your creations to the Bake-Off stand in the Garden at 3 pm. They’ll be judged on taste, texture, appearance & technical complexity, & the winners will be announced at 4 pm.

Due to the practical constraints of pollarding in the Summer months this year's planned tree pollarding will now be put back to the Winter when the operation will be easier and less hazardous. Meanwhile our tree surgeons will be grinding the stumps from the three felled trees down to the ground as soon as they have time in their schedule.

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