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Warning of 'severe' changes to landscape after trees fall in storm

PUBLISHED: 12:52 11 February 2020 | UPDATED: 12:52 11 February 2020

Tree Surgeons work through Storm Ciara to clear the fallen tree blocking access into Postwick. Picture: Lee Blanchflower - Blanc Creative

Tree Surgeons work through Storm Ciara to clear the fallen tree blocking access into Postwick. Picture: Lee Blanchflower - Blanc Creative

Lee Blanchflower - Blanc Creative 2020

As hundreds of trees came crashing down across Norfolk on Sunday due to strong gales from Storm Ciara, tree surgeons across the county were ready for the inevitable deluge of calls asking for their help.

A tree has fallen down on Church Road in Scottow, Norwich, caused by Storm Ciara. Picture: Neil PerryA tree has fallen down on Church Road in Scottow, Norwich, caused by Storm Ciara. Picture: Neil Perry

Ace of Spades Gardens Ltd, based in Norwich, is one of those companies whose employees were kept busy, as hundreds more trees were left damaged along with those which where toppled.

"It's still going on," said managing director Michael Barker, "nothing has slowed down.

"The fallout isn't on the day, it's in the following weeks."

He and his staff of four - including one surveyor consultant and three tree surgeons - are expecting to be kept busy in the near future as more and more people call upon their expertise to help with dangerous and unhealthy trees.

Storm Ciara Wroxham Road tree blocking road, smashed wall and traffic lights. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMANStorm Ciara Wroxham Road tree blocking road, smashed wall and traffic lights. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

READ MORE: Storm Ciara: Woman, 75, was just six feet from where 80ft tree crashed into house

Mr Barker said: "These storms are cyclical - we get them every year.

"Anything ill-treated or badly managed is being found out. We're always around to pick up the pieces."

Fallen trees caused most disruption when blocking roads - the westbound carriageway of the A47 was closed at Blofield for most of Sunday after a tree blocked both lanes a little before 9.30am.

Elsewhere, the northbound lane of Wroxham Road, Sprowston, was blocked while the A148 was also cut off in the eastbound direction after the wind brought down another tree.

While these are problems that, although disruptive, can be remedied fairly quickly, there are also some issues created that can have an impact in the long-term.

READ MORE: Storm Ciara: The Norfolk heroes who helped others in need

Mr Barker - an arboricultural and landscape consultant at his company - expressed his concern over what he described as "severe" changes to the landscape after these trees had fallen, describing the situation as "very sad".

He said: "They have got to be replaced. These trees provide food sources and habitats for wildlife.

"Animals get used to coming back to the same place to find that food or shelter, so when it has suddenly gone that can have a real bad effect.

"In the summer too, the trees provide shade for us all. It's so important that the trees are replaced."

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