Mature tree lines along streets

Along the road in which I live are two separate sections: one with plenty of mature oaks and hornbeam lining the roadway, and one without. Whilst the oaks and hornbeams suffered rather significant damage as a result of construction works within their root zones and aerial space, there is no question their presence is of amenity benefit.

For context, the entire area around where I live was once agricultural land. The land was grazed by cows, and some of the houses were built upon the shadows of the tractor and cow barns. The mature trees were once part of old agricultural field boundaries, or formed old informal lanes. A consultation of old early Ordnance Survey maps of the area (from the mid-late 1800s to early 1900s) shows that the road on which these trees reside has existed for over 100 years, with old plots to the south and agricultural fields to the north. In some respects, the area has not changed in layout – the infrastructure has merely been upgraded to modern standards, and old properties were removed and replaced with new ones. During such upgrades and development, many of these old oaks and hornbeams would have suffered the damage they still exhibit – old pruning wounds at least 30cm in diameter where entire stems and limbs have been removed, and visibly severed roots where driveways and the highway have been put in.

The below photos, taken just an hour ago, hopefully go some way to not only showing how great it is to have a road lined with such mature trees, but also the damage the trees have endured as a result. Those scars will remain as a reminder of man’s destruction of the environment, for no sake but his own.

As we look down the road we can see that either side is lined with mature oaks and hornbeam, some of which are multi-stemmed.
Here, a massive limb was removed to accommodate for the highway’s installation. When this road was just a track, the limb would not have been an issue, but with buses and the occasional lorry, the limb’s retention was untenable. Unfortunately, such major removal is likely to markedly impact upon the tree’s condition.
Some roots were severed for the construction of this driveway when the estate was built some 30 years ago, though as this driveway looks to be rather new perhaps the root zone of this oak has again been damaged somewhat.
In this image, just out of shot is a pathway. This root would have been removed to enable the pathway’s successful construction.
A three-stemmed oak became a two-stemmed oak when this stem was removed to enable a property to be built with an accessible frontage.
Panning out, we can see how the mature oaks in this image add a texture to the vista that is unrivalled by any man-made structure.
Standing on the same spot but looking the other way, the lack of trees makes the area very barren. Wind gusts reach higher intensities in this area of the road. I also wonder whether property values are different.
Mature tree lines along streets

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