THE last work felling and removing thousands of trees which were damaged in and around Aberdeen from Storm Arwen, Storm Malik and Storm Corrie has started.
Aberdeen City Council recorded more than 450 tree incidents over the period of Storm Arwen – the first of the storms on Friday 26 November 2021 – and one incident could be dozens of trees felled or a single one.
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There was a devastating impact on Carnie woods, Hazlehead and the woodland surrounding Aberdeen Crematorium when hundreds of trees have come down.
The City Council’s arboricultural team with help from contractors has been hard at work since then repairing the badly-damaged storm woods. The last of the works is at Hazledene Road, which will take about one month, and Denwood, three months. The car parks for these woods will be closed and path access will be restricted in the working area, but access to Hayfield Riding School will be unaffected.
Aberdeen City Council Net Zero, Environment and Transport Committee vice convener Councillor Miranda Radley said: “Storm Arwen and the two later storms wreaked havoc across the area, damaging huge areas of woodlands, and blowing down trees which caused power cuts as well as damage to buildings.
“It has been a huge task to repair the woods, felling and removing thousands of trees from across the city and its boundaries.
“We have to commend the amount of sheer work carried out by the arboricultural team, along with roads and Countryside Rangers colleagues, for their hard work in the recovery operation.”
The arboricultural team worked in the worst of the storm to ensure trees were made safe and that roads were cleared for safe access. They worked closely with the Scottish Rescue and Fire Service and Police Scotland for the priorities of clearing trees on danger to people’s lives or homes, and roads. Arboriculture and roads teams worked closely together to clear roads of fallen trees in the days after Storm Arwen and the next two storms. The teams have continued to work closely since then for the recovery operation.
A large number of trees were blown down in Storm Arwen, many uprooted, branches and limbs snapped off, and several trees have been left in a precarious and dangerous position. Trees in schools, parks, play areas, open spaces, streets, and woodlands have been equally badly affected.
The clean-up had a significant impact on the arboricultural team’s workload which meant dealing with Dutch Elm and Ash Dieback was affected although this work will now be re-scheduled.