There was a protest that happened last week when the local residents together with other protesters came together to save a century old tree located in Parkville. The protesters gathered on the footpath where they were each clutching a cup of tea and their protesting voices are overpowered by the noise of the chainsaw.
One of the protesters was Jim Shugg who is an arborist. His work involves pruning and cutting down trees but according to him there are certain jobs that he will never accept such as the one that happened before his eyes. Mr. Shugg was arrested during that day along with other three protesters because he is standing between the cherry picker and the gum tree which is listed on the National Trust. The incident happened on Flemington Road located in Melbourne.
The government has been battling with the campaigners for months already regarding the issue of cutting down the gum, a lemon-scented tree, which is situated in the middle strip of the Parkville.
One side of the battling parties is the VicRoads and they are aiming to cut down the tree because its location is considered the only safe way in order to realign the road and prepare it for the new widening project called CityLink Tulla.
The other party is consists of neighbors as well as advocates for heritage and the environment. They believed that the authorities have not consulted any other options in order to save the gum tree.
Ann Read, a resident of Parkville, expressed her sadness and said that the event was dreadful for the whole community. She was also briefly arrested during the ordeal after she chained herself to the gum. She also added that they have a proposed plan which is safer for everyone involved – cars, pedestrians and cyclists but no one is listening.
The gum tree was said to be 94 years old but historic images have shown that it was already there in 1905 and it was more likely planted around 1895.
This incident does not show that all tree loppers are the same especially those in Perth.