RESIDENTS are angry that mature trees were accidentally cut down in a road on their estate.

The trees, two of which were said to be 75 years old, have been chopped down on Soden Road in Heyford Park, near Bicester, and people say it has completely changed the street scene.

Developer Dorchester Living were responsible for the felling which took place on November 5 where it was later discovered that the wrong trees had been cut down.

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Dorchester had gained permission to remove five Leyland cypresses, but an error was made whereby three different trees outside the agreed area were removed.

Andy Smith, who lives on the road, said: “It’s a travesty that has now changed the whole look of the street. I hope they (Dorchester) get fined for it by the council and have to plant new trees.

“Five years ago we fought to save those trees as Dorchester wanted to widen the road and provide footpaths on both sides. Fortunately we won that battle, but I’m so sad these trees have gone now.”

Dorchester has a huge masterplan for Upper Heyford transforming former US and RAF base into an estate with more than 1,000 homes.

Some residents are not happy with the amount of trees that will have to be removed to make way for building.

Sharon Keen, 68, who lives in Heyford Park, said: “The trees were healthy and were home to many birds as well as a whole ecosystem, which now has been sadly lost.

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"Too many of our trees and hedges are currently being cut down for no reason except for building more houses, roads or footpaths."

Cherwell District Council says the case has been passed to its planning enforcement team for investigation, but Heyford Park Residents Association says the accidental felling could have been avoided.

Chair of the group, Marc Thielke, said: “The accidental destruction of mature trees is a terrible loss for the community. Mistakes like this could have been avoided by a simple phone call to the proper authority before starting work.

"There are rules and regulations for contractors; when those rules are followed the impacts of construction on residents will be reduced."

Paul Silver, CEO of Dorchester Living said: “Unfortunately a mistake was made whilst the work was carried out resulting in three trees without consent being removed.

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“We are currently working with Cherwell District Council to come up with an appropriate mitigation measure which is likely to include planting new trees to replace those felled in error.”