FAQ

The following are a list of questions that have been asked by residents. If you have any questions that are not answered here about particular issues, then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Q1. How much has been paid to the CWMCL for the cut timber removed from our woodland?
Q2. What was the expenditure this year (2011) so far spent on clearing the ten trees on 5 day notice including applying for the authority to fell the trees in the first place?
Q3. Why are ‘dangerous’ trees not being dealt with in line with the priority as defined by the detailed survey carried out by Mr Wallace?
Q4. What was the justification to fell some trees when supposedly dangerous trees stand firm?
Q5. Is it a legal requirement and conditional of the councils 5 day notice authority granted for felling the seven trees mentioned above to replant like native trees?
Q6. Why has the mess created by tree work with regard piles of shredded tree material not been tidied up?
Q7. Who actually owns the woodland? Is it Barratt Homes or is it Cavanna Homes?
Q8. Barratt and Cavanna Homes had a duty of care to ensure our woodland and homes were safe at purchase but this was not achieved so why has the CWMCL failed to robustly seek funding from the builders to compensate for failures and most importantly, not providing a safe and sustainable environment for all?
Q9. Why has the estate maintenance person not been active recently? It has been implied that his contract has not been renewed and there are motions in place to cut his hours/visits. Nigel has been an excellent employee. Is there a shortage of funds to employ this vital person?

Q1. How much has been paid to the CWMCL for the cut timber removed from our woodland?
A. Nothing, as the cost of cutting the trees was offset by the value of firewood produced. Several timber merchants were approached to try and get somebody to take down trees for firewood and nobody was interested.
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Q2. What was the expenditure this year so far spent on clearing the ten trees on 5 day notice including applying for the authority to fell the trees in the first place?
A. £3,360 inc VAT. There was no specific charge for applying for the authority.
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Q3. Why are ‘dangerous’ trees not being dealt with in line with the priority as defined by the detailed survey carried out by Mr Wallace?
A. Malcolm Carter applied for the removal of dangerous trees along the railway line immediately after the agreement from the AGM last September (2011). He met the new tree officer, Ian Davis, and was told that as most of the trees were ‘living’ he could not agree to any work without further approval from the Forestry Commission Officer. After a further meeting this spring with Ian and Richard Paton, it was agreed that there was potential danger from the trees along the railway line, but remedial work could only be done as part of a Forestry Commission Management Plan which has now been submitted. This is the Management Plan the Forestry Commission is anticipated to fund.
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Q4. What was the justification to fell some trees when supposedly dangerous trees stand firm?
A. These trees were identified as ‘most dangerous’ by Ian Davis the tree officer, the others were not considered sufficiently hazardous for him to permit the TPOs to be lifted.
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Q5. Is it a legal requirement and conditional of the councils 5 day notice authority granted for felling the seven trees mentioned above to replant like native trees?
A. It is only a legal requirement to replant with a like native tree if a specimen subject to a TPO has been felled without the appropriate consent or notice procedure being followed through. It is not a requirement for trees within woodland but may be required for individual specimens such as within a landscaped garden. As you will appreciate the Notices in respect of the trees to which you refer predate Smiths Gore’s involvement so we have no knowledge of their precise contents but it would clearly not be prudent to replant until the Rhododendrons have been cleared and follow up spraying carried out. Then the area will of course be required for access for removal of trees lower down by the railway which replanting would clearly follow on from rather than precede.
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Q6. Why has the mess created by tree work with regard piles of shredded tree material not been tidied up?
A. No wood can be permitted to be removed off site until the quarantine is lifted by FERA.
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Q7. Who actually owns the woodland? Is it Barratt Homes or is it Cavanna Homes?
A. Crinnis Wood Company Management Limited own the woodland and is charged with its management. CWMCL is ‘successor in Title’ to the original developers and your covenant is now with CWMCL as a result.
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Q8. Barratt and Cavanna Homes had a duty of care to ensure our woodland and homes were safe at purchase but this was not achieved so why has CWMCL failed to robustly seek funding from the builders to compensate for failures and most importantly, not providing a safe and sustainable environment for all?
A. CWMCL was in fact set up by the developers, Barratt and Cavanna. Whilst they remained in control they were not likely to pursue any such matter against themselves. It is only since the property owners fully came into control which seems to be sometime after 2008 or 2009 (as can be seen in copies of notes of a householder’s sub-committee dated then) that there would have been any opportunity to a) realise that there was a problem and b) do anything about it. Whilst we understand that action has not been ruled out, the obvious problem is that it may well involve litigation which is extremely expensive and would have to be funded by the members of the company.
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Q9. Why has the estate maintenance person not been active recently? It has been implied that his contract has not been renewed and there are motions in place to cut his hours/visits. Nigel has been an excellent employee. Is there a shortage of funds to employ this vital person?
A. Mr Scrace is not an employee but a contractor and submits invoices which are approved and paid on receipt in the usual way. We requested to have a conversation with him about the possibility of switching from billing on an as and when basis to reaching an agreement to provide his services for a fixed annual fee which would be billed and paid by monthly instalments but have not yet received from him the requested quotation on that basis. We have also written to him as regards being included on the Smiths Gore register of approved contractors but he does not appear to have received that correspondence and we have recently sent it to him again via email. Since then we have received a call from Mr Scrace saying that he had not cut the grass for some time as he was uncertain of his position and we reassured him that we wished him to continue as before, so any confusion is now over.
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