None yew.

Sorry – l have to say it – l don’t appreciate the felling of the yew trees at the side of the Kennet and Avon Canal through Sydney Gardens.

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Looks like the tree bled to death?

The idea is to return the ledges to how they were when Rennie designed the water-based transport system linking the West with London but l am wary about trying to exactly. recapture the past.

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Another stump.

History is built up of layers.

The trees had been there a long time and were part of the canal’s heritage.

Shame they had not been listed.

A bed of natural flowers in their place is not an authentic replacement.

1 Comment

  1. Speaking as one who fell in love with canal about 1960 and has written about it, I can guess exactly why they were cut down.

    For a whole variety of reasons, trees and canals don’t mix. I would guess the roots were beginning to cause structural problems . Furthermore, trees fill up the canal with dead leaves and other detritus. Even yews can be very messy. We ran firmly aground under a tree near Pewsey, where BW ( as it was before the CRT took over) had been a bit slow in getting the dredger out. If you look at the old photos and drawings of the K&A in my book Queen of Waters, you’ll see how free of trees the canal is.

    Recently there was an outcry because the CRT cut down another tree near Hampton Row. I walked past as some people were lamenting this very loudly, and I showed them where the roots were causing damage to the canal bank. As I said to them, if the bank gives way and all the water between Widcombe top lock and Bradford on Avon dumped itself on Bath, you can imagine it would be a huge disaster. I agree BW should not have got rid of the stop gates which limits the extent of water loss – there are the remains of a a pair under Folly Footbridge – but they did.

    It would have been the CRT who decreed these trees had to be cut down – I think you’ll find it’s nothing to do with history.

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