Cllr Karl Love shares this latest news about the Umbrella Tree. Ed
Following a meeting with Island Roads, Cllr Ian Ward (Cabinet member for roads), Island representatives of the campaign to save the Umbrella Tree and myself, the outcome was very encouraging and there is now a real chance of the tree living out its days.
I requested a meeting with Isle of Wight council in the New Year to try bring this matter to positive close. I’ve worked hard in the background to support our community’s aspirations to try and secure a positive outcome for our community and am delighted with the discussions and position adopted by IWC and Island Roads today (Friday).
Much work has taken place
The Friends of the tree have done a great job in raising the profile. I remember starting to dress the tree with them when it was first announced that the tree’s future was in danger and might be cut down.
A lot has happened since then, with countless meetings protests and celebrations.
I was able to have a discussion yesterday evening the Cabinet member Cllr Ian Ward to try smooth the way to our meeting which took place this morning.
Time given to form Community Interest Company
The Friends of the tree have been given time to form a Community Interest Company which will take over the care and ownership of the three.
They will need to raise a considerable amount of funding to pay for a framework, £10 million insurance policy, a package of maintenance and inspections.
No hidden agendas
Cllr Ward said,
“The will is here by Isle of Wight Council to keep the tree in place if all the health and safety requirements are met.”
Peter Marsden, Isle of Wight Council officer said,
“There are no hidden agendas for creating the parking spaces or alterations to the area on which the tree sits. If at all possible we want the tree to remain.”
Support from Red Funnel
Red Funnel have also been supportive to myself during conversations I have had with them and offered to help.
On this day of fabulous sunshine, we have rays of real hope and words of encouragement from IWC.
Not out of the woods
It is now important that preparations are made to form a Community Interest Company and that quotations are gathered for the creation and implementation of a structure to help support the tree.
We are not out of the woods, so to say, but it’s more encouraging and positive that we could have hoped for.
We were delighted at the response and can now move forward in fundraising and putting in place the necessary processes which can secure the tree for all to enjoy.