Anger at Lasswade tree felling despite no permission

Trees being felled on land behind the Laird and Dog pub in Lasswade.
Trees being felled on land behind the Laird and Dog pub in Lasswade.

A housebuilder has sparked fury in Lasswade after felling trees on a site before its plans for eight homes were granted permission by the council.

Dimension Homes has been working on the site behind the Laird and Dog pub in Lasswade. Last week there was machinery on site to remove the trees, before permission was given last Thursday.

And it appears all the trees on the site were removed despite some being protected.

A concerned local resident who asked not to be named, told the Advertiser: “All the trees in the area are protected. It was only meant to be a small amount being cut down.

“The whole lot has been cut down. There is nothing left.

“I looked at the application which says which trees should be cut down and which trees should be left. But there is nothing left.

“The council say they (the housebuilder) have been told to stop it. But they are still working on it, taking down trees. There is a big uproar. A lot of people say they will speak to their MP.

“The council say there should be a lot of trees left and there should be nobody working there. But there is machinery and tractors taking the remaining trees away.

“It’s the residents that are left with this mess.

“It’s on conservations land.

“The whole site from top to bottom – there is no trees left.

“How could the council say it’s going to be passed when no decision had been made?

“It’s just earth now. There are no trees at all.”

A Midlothian Council spokesman confirmed that the trees were felled without permission.

He said: “The council requires to be notified of works affecting trees in a conservation area. However, there is an exemption where works are required to implement a planning permission.

“When felling started, the council advised the applicant that he should stop felling and should wait for the related planning permission to be issued.

“Unfortunately the applicant did not follow this advice. Planning permission was issued on Thursday January 30.”

Despite attempts to contact Dimension Homes for a comment through the architect for this planning application, Fiddes Architects, no response was received.