HC Deb 02 November 1954 vol 532 cc182-3
3. Mr. H. Fraser

asked the Minister of Works whether the committee appointed in April of this year to advise on trees and on special problems of felling and planting in the Royal Parks has reported to him; and whether he will publish its report.

13. Mr. G. Williams

asked the Minister of Works if the committee, appointed by the late Minister, to advise him on the trees in the Royal Parks, has completed its report.

Mr. Birch

Yes, Sir. The Committee has presented its first report, and it is being published today. Copies are available at the Vote Office. I am much indebted to the Committee and I have accepted its recommendations.

Mr. Fraser

Will my hon. Friend explain the position of the avenue of trees that has been replanted in the Broad Walk, Kensington, where it is reported that foreign beech trees that were imported and planted in the avenue were removed? What are my hon. Friend's plans for the future of the avenue?

Mr. Birch

The avenue was planted with beech trees, which were, I think, imported from Belgium or Holland. As they have almost all died, they have been taken away again, and the avenue is to be replanted with lime trees.

Mr. Williams

Will my hon. Friend tell us how the Press got hold of this report before we did? Is he aware that last Friday the "Evening Standard" said that one of the recommendations concerned 200 young beech trees in the Broad Walk, Kensington Gardens? How did the "Evening Standard" get to know that before we were told?

Mr. Birch

I understand that an exceptionally enterprising reporter had the initiative to ask one of the men who were removing the beech trees.

Mr. Nicholson

Is the Minister contemplating planting a grove of birch trees?

Mr. Birch

In arboriculture, it is important to distinguish between birches and beeches.