A FUND-RAISING carol concert generated more than £400 to help replace trees on Malvern Hills and Commons lost to disease.
The Malvern Hills Trust has thanked the Vital Sparks West Gallery Choir which took centre stage last month at Little Malvern Priory and everyone who gave so generously.
The concert was set up after a number of trees on the wooded slopes of the hills, in hedgegrows and in urban green spaces fell victim to ash dieback disease which has swept across the UK.
Ashes make up as much as two thirds of the trees found in woodlands and there is no cure for the disease which is estimated to kill between 60 and 80 per cent of all ash trees.
Dead and severely diseased trees must be removed where they pose an unacceptable risk.
Infected ash trees become brittle those around car parks, popular paths, roads and properties must be removed for public safety.
The surveying and tree works across this area come at a huge cost to the Malvern Hills Trust – it has been predicted more than £60,000 per year will be needed for the next five years to deal with this crisis.
In response, the trust is fund-raising to help cover the costs of removing unsafe ash trees and to replant and replace lost trees where needed within the landscape.
Surveys last summer recorded that ash trees are continuing to decline.
The first phase of work into combating the disease found around 40 ash trees were showing severe signs of infection and were removed from high risk locations near to roadsides, including Wells Road, Wyche Road and Hollybush Roughs.
Trees were also removed for public safety around Gardiner’s Quarry and Earnslaw car parks.
Further ash trees have been identified for removal at Foley Terrace and West Malvern Road this winter after showing advanced signs of the disease.
The Trust is already reporting the poorly ash trees likely to be included in next year’s winter works.