Tree cutting leaves Woodburn residents stumped

The bottom of the problem tree in Woodburn
The bottom of the problem tree in Woodburn

Midlothian Council has agreed to finish the job of cutting down a problem tree in Woodburn, with locals left bemused by the half-finished work.

At the beginning of April, Midlothian Council staff cut down half the tree at Woodburn Road and refused to do the other half when queried by local residents.

One of them, Teresa Paul (59), a catering assistant at Scottish Widows, was not happy with the original work.

She said: “It’s a disgrace. I phoned the council right away.

“The upstairs neighbour was in her house when they were cutting it down. It’s her part of the garden. She went down and said ‘you can’t leave it like that’, but they said that’s what they were told to do.

“They also said that if we cut it down ourselves we would be charged.

“Kids are now coming into the garden and using it as a mini cafe to sit and eat their chips, sitting on the half tree trunk.

“We are having enough bother with the young ones here without them coming into the garden leaving chips in the tree trunks.”

Teresa and her neighbours are embarrassed by the tree.

She said:“We have been trying for years to get it cut down. The other side is actually bending over now, as there is no support.

“We are not worried that it will come down though. I have been in this house for 35 years and that tree has always been there. It’s massive, even still. It’s 50 feet tall.

“But now it just looks stupid, and everybody is laughing at the fact that the council has come out and chopped half a tree down and left the other half. It has had a bad haircut!

“Instead of just cutting the whole thing down and have it dealt with, they have left it like that. They are just making fools out of the people here.

“Folk are coming past and laughing. It’s actually bringing attention to the garden which we could do without.”

A council spokesman said: “We pruned the tree at the request of a local resident in late March, early April. The tree was pruned away from the house.

“However, as it does look unsightly it has now been decided to remove the tree. This work will be done within the next fortnight.”