Despite Scientific evidence which links tree felling with flood risk, The Forestry Commission have stated that they do not consult with the Environmental Agency before granting a licence to fell trees.
The Forestry Commission licence to fell 2,000 trees in Frensham Forest a significantly important section of the Bourne and Frensham Vale wildlife corridor. A number of protected species frequent the woods including Brown Long-Eared bats which are not only protected but also of national importance. 50 year-old Oak trees are being felled in this process.
Within Frensham Forest lies an Ancient Woodland (circa 1600 AD). Frensham Forest is a living asset as a vital section of the Bourne Wildlife Corridor. If this proposal goes ahead and ignores the Local Plan and the wishes of Farnham residents, losing this Greenfield woodland site really will decimate the habitat of UK and European protected species.
A large oak tree can draw up to 50 or more gallons of water per day. Some large trees use up 15 gallons of water per hour on a hot day (obviously reduces the water table). Therefore a woodland will take up a significant amount of water from the soil – Frensham Forest’s felling of 2,000 trees has no requirement to slowdown the effects of downpours – the maths are startling – let’s be ultra-conservative and say each tree draws up 10% of this capacity. 2,000 trees = 100,000 gallons per day on a hot day. So take 20% of this number and multiply it by 365 that makes 7.3 Million gallons of rainwater with nowhere to go but Frensham Vale. From this it’s obvious why we were flooded more after the first felling of trees at Frensham Forest.
Question: Who is liable when householders become flooded?