We were shocked to discover that Network Rail have authorised the felling of large, and historically important, trees along the railway lines between Romford and Gidea Park stations and from Romford to Upminster, on the ‘push and pull’ line.
These woodlands act as a vital ‘green lung’ through our town and are home to a vast ecosystem of local wildlife. Residents have indicated the presence of badgers, rare moths and protected slow worms.
For decades, those backing onto the railway line have been able to enjoy their gardens, with the trees acting as a natural sound barrier to protect residents from significant noise pollution.
It is impressive how the community has come together to fight for our local environment.
David Taylor, Press and Communication Officer for Romford Conservatives and a candidate in St Edward's Ward applauded the local effort. "It takes a community to save the environment. I've been impressed by how our local residents have organised, documented, and lead on this campaign. I'm pleased that Romford Conservatives can play our part, putting pressure on Network Rail through our M.P and Councillors"
Local residents launched a Change.Org petition and are planning a protest. Local new outlets documented the community campaign and reported live from the site of the destruction. However, the work cannot stop now, and we must keep the pressure on to urge Network Rail to make their decisions part of the public record.
We are, therefore, making 3 demands of Network Rail:
1) To immediately halt works to tear down the trees by the railway lines and issue an apology to residents.
2) To be transparent and publish their decision note, wildlife/biodiversity survey, and safety assessment for public scrutiny.
3) To engage in meaningful consultation and offer reassurance that future engagement will be better.
Romford Conservatives, in partnership with the local community and others, have been working tirelessly to prevent this destruction.
Andrew Rosindell M.P. has spoken directly to Network Rail and secured a pause in the work, along with promises for a better consultation. You can read more about Andrew's success HERE.
Our St Edward's and St Alban's Action Teams have been raising awareness, amongst residents, with letter drops and social media.
Council Leader Damian White has being leading efforts, in Havering Council, to find solutions.
Together, and only as a community, can we protect Romford's environment.
If you'd like to speak to one of our team, about our work or to raise a concern, please contact your local Action Team. You can find there details HERE