HC Deb 15 November 1955 vol 546 cc169-71
3. Captain Pilkington

asked the Minister of Works to make a statement on the present tree-planting policy in the Royal Parks.

Mr. Birch

My policy is to plant in order to ensure continuity of the traditional landscape of the Parks. The planting programme is based on the recommendations of my Advisory Committee on Forestry, which has recently made a thorough survey of the Royal Parks.

Captain Pilkington

Is my right hon. Friend taking into account the extra trees which will probably be needed for the road improvements which we hope will be carried out in the Parks?

Mr. Birch

That is a slightly different question. There is another Question on tree planting.

4. Wing Commander Bullus

asked the Minister of Works how many trees in the Royal parks have been felled since the end of the war and in the last two years, respectively; and how many new trees have been planted in the same periods.

Mr. Birch

Approximately 1,500 trees have been felled in the Royal parks since the war; of these about 800 have been felled in the last two years. The approximate figures for planting are 7,700 since the war and 2,600 in the last two years.

Wing Commander Bullus

While congratulating my right hon. Friend on his credit balance, may I ask him to try to ensure that there are always more plantings than fellings in the Royal parks?

Mr. Birch

Yes, indeed; we have a very big planting programme ahead of us. The limiting factor is the difficulty in getting good well-grown stock, but we want to plant many thousands of trees.

Mr. Snow

In the context of that Answer and the Answer to the previous Question, may I ask whether there are not in the Ministry some rather exotic ideas about trees in the Royal parks? When the Minister talks about a traditional landscape, is he talking about the Broad Walk, because I have seen some odd and un-English looking trees planted there?

Mr. Birch

I do not know what the hon. Member's idea of an exotic tree is. The trees planted in the Broad Walk are limes, one of our oldest and most traditional trees. I do not think we are going in for exotic trees.