The fight is on to save an attractive piece of woodland near Chells Pond on Chells Lane, in front of the Manor House. This is being threatened by plans from a developer. Supported by the local Stevenage borough councillors for Manor Ward, Lis Knight, Robin Parker and Graham Snell (Robin is also the Hertfordshire county councillor for Chells Division) local residents have organised a petition to Stevenage Borough Council to try and save the woodland.

Following representations to council officials by the three local councillors, a temporary tree preservation order (TPO) has been granted. Before long, the officials (not the councillors) will make the decision about whether or not to make the TPO permanent. The petition seeks to make the TPO permanent.

Lis Knight attended the launch of the petition on 11 February (see photo). Lis said “I am right behind the local residents in this campaign and all three Manor councillors congratulate these residents for taking the action so speedily. We all wish them the best of luck.”

Robin Parker added, “It would be criminal to destroy this woodland area. I urge everyone to sign the petition.”

There follows a communication and flyer from the organiser of the petition.

Hi,

We are the residents of Chells Manor and we have started a petition to prevent the trees in front of the Manor House (grade 2 listed) from being felled for development. Attached is our flyer which we have distributed to local homes.

The land was intentionally left as woodland by the local developer Leach Homes in 1987 for the benefit of the whole community and along with the other surrounding woodland provide a wonderful rural feel and an attractive backdrop for the local Manor house and pond.

This whole amenity is a major contributor to the well being and enjoyment of young and old who come to relax by the pond to feed the ducks and moorhens and to enjoy the quiet ambiance and other wildlife which abound in the woods.

It is difficult to find such rural havens in a busy town like Stevenage and those we have we should treasure and keep at all costs.

Our local councillor and county councillor have helped us obtain a Temporary Tree Preservation Order (TPO95) from Stevenage Borough Council. We only have until the 20th of February to give our support to the order and to make the order permanent.

We would very much appreciate your help to save this important local community amenity and hope that you can feature our fight to preserve the woodland in the Comet for the benefit of all.

Yours sincerely

Ian James (spokesperson)

1 Hunters Close
Stevenage
SG2 7BL
Tel 01438 748701 (day)
01438 314923 (evening)