Council's roadside tree planting "a £100,000 mistake"

A former councillor has accused Cornwall Council of wasting money on imported London plane trees as part of a road redevelopment scheme, which have since had to be replaced.

The trees in June 2011 - image: Google
The trees in June 2011 - image: Google

The council planted 29 London planes, imported from Italy at a cost of £1,100 each, on Tolvaddon Road in Pool, between Redruth and Camborne, in 2010.

"The advice was very clear that the trees were unsuitable, but for whatever reason [the council] went ahead and ordered them from Italy anyway," Dave Biggs told BBC News.

Putting the cost of buying, transporting, planting and maintaining the trees at over £100,000, he added: "For the life of me I can't understand why London plane trees couldn't be sourced in the UK."

The council said it was unclear why London planes were used or imported from Italy, as the team leader of the project at the time in 2009 had since left, but claimed they were planted "in accordance with recommendations".

It explained that the planes have now been removed and replaced with 16 Acer trees, at an additional cost of nearly £6,000.

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