Plans to alter section of Lade Braes

Councillor Brian Thomson.
Councillor Brian Thomson.

A section of Lade Braes could be significantly altered thanks to plans to replace trees.

The New Park Educational Trust has applied to Forestry Commission Scotland for a felling licence for a conifer plantation on land between Priory Gardens and the Kinness Burn.

The trust says experts have recommended felling the mature Sitka spruce, which dominate the 0.8 hectare site, and replace it with native species.

Martin Passmore, chairman of the trust, said: “It will take some time for the new trees to grow, but in due course there will be a wood which is much more in keeping with the surrounding area and what would have been there before.

“It will also help local wildlife. The trustees ask for the patience of local residents during the felling process and in avoiding damage to the saplings when they are planted.

“It may also be necessary to fence off certain areas for safety reasons, but as much access as possible will be maintained.”

The trust says that due to the nesting season, it could be later in the year before this is done.

The plan has been welcomed by Councillor Brian Thomson.

He said: “The proposed felling of the trees would significantly alter a section of the Lade Braes, and would leave a rather stark landscape for a period of time, however, provided any potential harm to protected flora and fauna is mitigated, I think the long-term benefits of planting native tree and shrub species will outweigh concerns about the initial visual impact.

“I would stress, however, that this is not a Fife Council matter, and any comments or concerns should be directed to Forestry Commission Scotland.”