A very busy week with quite a bit to update you on.
As flagged in last weeks weekly email, the STAG negotiating team held a fourth day of mediated talks with Sheffield Council on Monday. More progress was made, and in case you haven’t seen it, a joint press statement was put out, which said the following, in italics:
This is a jointly agreed press statement following a morning of talks today (below). As campaigners are aware, the group from STAG SG that have been engaged in the talks, have been trying to assist the Council in formulating a proposal on a new way forward for the identified 300 or so trees from the Core Investment Period and for the remaining trees on the highway network over the coming years. We anticipate that the detail of the Council’s plan and a further joint communication will be published shortly.
“Cllr Lewis Dagnall, Cabinet Member for Environment and Streetscene, and Chris Rust and Paul Brooke, co-chairs of Sheffield Trees Action Group said: ‘Sheffield City Council, Amey and STAG have completed a fourth day of constructive talks on the street trees issue, chaired again by Rt Rev Dr Pete Wilcox, Bishop of Sheffield. We intend to do a further joint communication shortly with more details of what has been discussed and publish the Council’s plan for the way forward.’
Bishop Pete added: ‘This morning’s meeting was the last in the series which it was my privilege to chair. The end of this phase of the process is an encouraging sign. I have been impressed by the commitment of everyone involved and I can vouch for the real progress which has been made’.”
So what this means is that we are only a week or so away from sharing the detail of the Council’s proposal, our views on the proposal, and what we have learned from the talks.
Government’s Environmental Minister raises #saveshefftrees cause
Woodland Trust Street Tree Awards
On Saturday last week, we were privileged to join a number of other Sheffield street tree campaigners at the first ever Woodland Trust Street Tree Awards, held at Alexander Palace in London. This was held a year to the day since the Woodland Trust launched it’s street tree campaign. What was wonderful about the day was hearing how the Woodland Trust were inspired to launch its campaign because of what has happened in Sheffield, and what we have all done to raise the profile of street trees in the UK, and how important they are to our health and wellbeing, and how much we love them. Similarly, many other campaign groups from across the UK were there, also up for awards, most of whom said that they had been inspired to act because of what we have done in Sheffield. Many of you don’t realise this, but we have changed the course of history in terms of UK street trees, and one way or another, very soon, legislation that gives more protection to UK street trees is on its way, all because of what we have done in Sheffield.
It was because of this that the Woodland Trust gave STAG a special award, in recognition of all we’ve done. The one sadness we had about the Awards was that only 14 of us from Sheffield could be there to receive the award, as spaces were limited. So many many more people have contributed to where we are today, in so many different ways, big or small. The award is for all of us. Well done to us all!
War Memorial Trees Saved
Good news! As a result of STAG’s negotiations with Sheffield Council, 32 of the 35 threatened War Memorial Trees have been saved.
“In this, the week of Remembrance Day, I am confirming that we have developed a plan to retain 32 of the 35 war memorial trees that were originally earmarked for replacement.”
Councillor Lewis Dagnall
The remaining three, which are reportedly too diseased to retain, are currently being independently investigated.
The talks with the council are still ongoing, however the negotiating team requested that the news be announced prior to Armistice Day on the 11th November.
Read the councils release here.
#Saveshefftrees Website Help
The current version of the savesheffieldtrees.org.uk website has been the work of two writers, supported by invaluable contributions from many experts.
Sadly one of the principal writers, Mary, died earlier this year meaning that we now are down to one ‘staff’ writer, who is also the editor.
Consequently the website is not getting the time and attention it deserves.
Several pages need updating or rewriting to reflect the tumultuous events of 2017 and early 2018.
So we are launching an appeal for writers who are familiar with the ins and outs of the campaign. Even if you can only commit a limited number of hours we are interested in hearing from you. Ideally we would like to build up a small team of dedicated individuals who can help share the load between them – no-one will be lumbered with more responsibility than they can handle.
We are also looking for people with web skills who have knowledge of making and fixing websites. These do not have to be the same people as the writers.
All reliable offers of assistance are welcome.
If you can help please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Update on the STAG Auction Site – Jane Miller
Over the next week, the final auctions will end for the time being, some on Sunday 2nd, in the evening, and the remainder on Friday 7th December, starting 9am and ending with two Panto tickets for Peter Pan in the evening.
The page will still promote talks, events and items for sale, linking direct to seller. A huge thank you to the very many kind donators and generous bidders, more on totals raised later.
Still time, just, to bid on the page and get a lovely item, and benefit STAG funds.
Link for more information and bidding: https://www.facebook.com/STAGAuctionSalesFundraiser/
Gumtree Sales Website
An update on the Gumtree second hand sales site that one of our loyal campaigners has set up to raise funds for the campaign. https://www.gumtree.com/profile/accounts/6de33d70d711eef3b199288e15e396e8
They have put out a call for additional sales items. So if you are looking to clear space in your houses, ahead of anticipated Christmas presents, why not go to the site and offer up some of your unwanted items on the site?
It’s Our City!
The petition is still live. If you haven’t yet signed the petition, then can I politely ask that if there is one thing you do this weekend, please sign it if you haven’t already! You can do so at the following weblink:
One of It’s Our City’s leading members, Anne Barr is also looking for people to take paper copies of the petition, and to work on achieveing signatures from their friends, families, neighbours, co-workers, and whoever else. If you are able to do this, and I encourage all of you to consider doing so, please contact Anne at email@example.com
Saturday 8th December, 8pm until late (doors open at 7.30pm) at Millennium Hall on Ecclesall Road -Let’s Dance for the Trees. A pre-Christmas social event for all tree campaigners and their friends. Featuring “The Free Radicals” (Sheffield’s biggest dance band) and “Break a Leg.” Tickets are available for £10 in advance fromwww.savesheffieldtrees.org.ukor £12 on the door. All proceeds to STAG.
Thursday 20th December (6.45pm arrival for a 7pm start) at the Nether Edge Bowling Club -A talk called “Bones: Ancient Maya to Modern Murder”by the forensic anthropologist Julie Saul (the mum of loyal campaigner Jenny Saul).Followed by a social for all our loyal Save Nether Edge Trees campaigners, which will start at 8pm. All proceeds raised to Save Nether Edge Trees.
Wednesday 5th Dec 12 noon – 2pm ACTION FOR SHEFFIELD STREET TREES – CARRYING ON THE SPIRIT OF THE TOWN HALL PROTEST – Arthur Baker
The summer town hall protest to save the Western Rd trees has been largely successful with 20 of the 23 threatened trees being saved. To this end we have suspended the twice weekly town hall protest during the winter months. It must be remembered, however, that the Council still want to fell 3 Western Rd trees.
There are still many trees city wide that face the chop. Plus many issues remain unresolved – the disgusting behaviour of the City Council, the distress caused to the Crookes community, the grotesque waste of tax payers money on the hapless Task and Finish Working Group and many other areas of concern. To this end during the winter months we plan to lobby full Council meetings until Spring 2019.
Future lobbies 12 – 2pm will be on the following dates. Council meetings start 2pm:
Wed 9th January.
Wed 6th February.
Wed 6th March (Budget Meeting).
SAVE ALL THE HEALTHY WESTERN RD TREES. AXE THE PFI. AMEY OUT
And that folks is all for now, please share if you would be kind enough.
Thanks as ever for your ongoing support