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.

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.

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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