Save Our Trees: Confusion as seven mature trees on Bridal Trail, Nelson Bay marked with yellow crosses

Concerned residents are seeking answers as to why these trees on the Bridal Trail at Nelson Bay have been marked – possibly identifying them for future removal. Photo: Marian Sampson.


SEVEN mature trees on the Bridal Trail between Dutchman’s Beach and Nelson Bay have been marked with yellow crosses.

This vandalism is causing community concerns after a large tree at the Bagnalls Beach Reserve was recently marked with a yellow cross and was subsequently cut down.

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Landcare member Roz Armstrong told News Of The Area, “I became aware of these trees through the Landcare network, several trees have been marked with a yellow cross and we are unaware as to why these trees have been marked at this point in time.

“There has been quite a large tree with another yellow cross on it on Government Road that has been brought down.

“When the community gathered to draw attention to these trees they have had no response from the Council as to what is happening.”

Roz believes that Council is letting the community down by not notifying the community in advance as to what’s happening and giving concerned locals a chance to say something.

“I think it is part and parcel to do with all the transparency issues that are happening at the moment we don’t know what’s happening in our community.”

Roz would like to see a simple notification in the newspapers advising the community why these trees or trees in the future are scheduled for removal before they’re removed.

Sue Olsen from Nelson Bay West Landcare Group and Econetwork Port Stephens told News Of The Area, “When I see a tree with a large yellow cross – it’s alarm (sic) – it’s destined for removal.

“We’ve seen that with the yellow cross tree that’s on Government Road that was recently cut and we don’t know why, on the weekend when we saw these trees marked we emailed various Council officers and they’ve got back to us saying that they don’t know why these are marked and they’re trying to get to the bottom of it, so it is of great concern as to why these things are happening.

“It’s a credit to Council that on this occasion that they’re looking into it, but we’ve been disappointed with the number of trees that have come down in different places… we moved here because we love a green tree scape and that’s been repeatedly lost through developers and not enough control on developing and corridors.

“Of course the trees do more than provide us with shade.

“The roots actually stabilize and the hollows provide homes for wildlife.

“Now the biggest trees have gone and these younger trees don’t have as many hollows or the right size necessarily for wildlife and we see aggressive birds like Lorikeets occupying those hollows at the expense of other less aggressive birds such as the Eastern Rosellas that are pushed out which is actually changing the biodiversity of the area.”

Sue Olsen said she had been told Council are unable to find any scheduled works for these trees and that Council is continuing to search and to get to the bottom of it.

In the meantime members of the community are imploring anyone that hears a chainsaw in the vicinity of the trees to immediately contact Council and their local Councillors.

Nigel Walters of the Tomaree Ratepayers and Residents Association said, “The TRRA and Econetworks has taken up the wider issue of tree policy with Council; we sent a letter to them back in September and we’re waiting for a response before we take it any further but we’re very concerned about the whole issue of trees, tree lopping or tree removal on public land because there’s just been too many instances recently of major materials coming down for no apparent reason and we think Council needs to really have a review of the whole tree management policy.”

In the meantime the fate of these trees is in the hands of the community reporting any vandalism, as there is no known or justified reason for their removal.

Port Stephens Council erected signage stating that the trees had been vandalised however the signs were removed in just two days.




Sue Olsen of Nelson Bay West Landcare and Econetwork with Roz Armstrong of Soldiers Point Landcare with one of the trees on the stairway from Thurlow Avenue to the Bridal Trail. Photo: Marian Sampson.

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