Tree gets in way of new church

LEAF-it out!Church-goers have today been left scratching their heads after plans to branch out with a new building have had to be altered - because of a tree.

LEAF-it out!

Church-goers have today been left scratching their heads after plans to branch out with a new building have had to be altered - because of a tree.

Members of Holly Lodge Baptist Church were thrilled when they got permission from Ipswich Borough Council to demolish the existing church in Bramford Lane and build a new one, but were surprised to hear the conditions.

The new building will have to be set two feet back from where original plans placed it because of a maple tree which is set in the church's grounds.


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And demolition workers will have to manoeuvre around the tree when they carry out work, because of a preservation order which was made in 1996.

Brian Scarlett, deacon of the church, said: “It is supposed to be the best species of its type in the country apparently but it just looks like a twisted little thing to us.

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“It doesn't look like anything special but we are happy to abide by the rules if it means we get the new building.

“We are lucky that there is two foot spare at the back so we can still carry out the work but I do have concerns about how the demolition team will cope.”

The tree was planted along with two others which have since died, by a former minister in 1956.

A preservation order was made after a workman employed to trim back its branches realised that it was a special variety.

Mr Scarlett added: “We expected there to be lots of restrictions to the plans when they were handed into the council so I guess this is a pretty small thing to adhere to.

“And we are all very pleased with the council for letting the new building be given the go-ahead. It will mean we can build a new church which will also serve as a meeting point for community events.”

A spokesman for the Ipswich Borough Council said: “We have approved the planning application subject to conditions and one of those is not to affect the protected tree.

“With the new positions we have asked for we cannot see any problems with the plans and we are happy to give the site our approval.”

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