It’s time to stand up and be counted. A heritage tree in Khandallah, 3 Boxhill, is about to be axed.
Obviously stung by vicious criticism of its failure to notify the destruction of numerous heritage buildings in recent times, the latest example being a block of 1870s office buildings on Willis Street, the council has decided to notify the impending death of a heritage tree. This is a surprise. How would the council react if you tried to demolish a heritage property in Mt Victoria. But of course most of us aren’t international property developers.
The irony is, I am informed, that the owners of the property, Grant and Julia Jefferson, actually live in Saudi Arabia and have done so since 1998. While they may like looking at sand and palm trees, we in Wellington like our heritage trees. Perhaps the absentee landlords are coming back and want the garden replaced with a large sandpit.
Public notifications relating to resource consents are rare things indeed. You may have more chance of seeing a Dodo landing at Wellington airport. Indeed there are only two recent examples (demolishing Lyall Bay surf life saving club – approved – and extending Hataitai badminton club – not approved). The residents must have been scared of stray cocks (shuttle) in the neighbourhood.
Let’s hope the council take the same strident efforts to defend this tree as they took when the Chow brothers, owners of brothels and sponsors of Team Wellington, took to a heritage tree on Tory Street with an axe.
I am still sore about the Willis Street buildings and many others that I will list later, so get your submissions in by November 10, and save a heritage tree.